Improper office ergonomics can lead to injury, illness, and a much less productive you. Your workspace should be set up in a way that allows you to be comfortable and productive. The first step is understanding the tasks and the steps of each of those tasks. Next, you’ll need to ensure that your setup is cohesive to those tasks. Any number of tasks that you may take for granted can cause serious injury. These tasks, such as bending, sitting, lifting, and stretching done repetitively or over long periods of time can cause muscle strain, joint pain, and more. Injury, illness, and stress only decrease your productivity and increase your time away from work. That can mean a loss of income for yourself and your employer. There are some huge pitfalls that can be avoided simply by steering clear of some common misconceptions when it comes to office ergonomics.
Office Ergonomics Misconception #1 – One And Done
A common misconception is of a single easy fix. Some believe it is the correct posture, others will tell you that it’s all in the chair you chose. The reality is you may need to make several adjustments and there isn’t a single fix. Office ergonomics is all about meshing safety and optimizing performance. This means you really have to evaluate your whole office space, not just switch out your chair. Often times we don’t seek to make changes until we start having aches and pains. That’s when it is easiest to blame the aliment on our slouch or poor seating choices. A great place to start is a How to Guide that will give you some direction on your setup from headsets to footrest and everything in between.
Office Ergonomics Misconception #2 – We’re All The Same
Take any group of people out of any office and their needs will never be exactly the same. There are so many factors to consider. Height, weight, health, individual tasks, and personal routine all contribute to a healthy and productive ergonomic resolution. One great thing about those differences is that many of the common tools and furniture that we use in an office setting such as the keyboard, chairs, and computer screens are adjustable and have some simple add-ons that can make them work for your individual needs.
Office Ergonomics Misconception #2 – It’s Expensive
There are many affordable options to choose from regardless of the equipment that you need, if you are replacing something that you already have, cost can be a huge factor. That’s when you need to look at the big picture. What’s the cost now going to save me in the long run? If you are out of work, slower performing, or even unable to continue to perform your job duties then the cost now may save you drastically in the future. Think of it this way. If you were going to jump out of an airplane you wouldn’t think twice about the cost of renting a parachute, right? Though the comparison is a little dramatic, the concept is the same. When your safety, health, and job performance are a stake, what is too expensive?
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