Office ergonomics start with your chair
Each person is different as is each workspace. Because you may sit in a chair, you may think that you are not putting any pressure on your back, but you are. The only two better options are to stand or lie down.
The goal is to have a chair that will give you support as well as comfortable posture. So starting from top to bottom:
- Make sure your head is level and facing straight ahead.
- Shoulders should be relaxed and in line with your hips.
- Forearms should be level and your wrists straight.
- Elbows should be at your sides.
- Your lower back should have lumbar support.
- Your knees should be level or lower than your hips.
- Your feet should be supported.
You chair should be adjustable in many ways to achieve comfortable posture in keeping with the items listed above. Here is a link to a great interactive presentation on proper chair adjustment. It is important to work with each individual to find what works best for them.
Be proactive, as using a poorly supportive chair and incorrect posture now can lead to problems in the future. Start checking with your employees today, evaluating their chairs as well as their posture and show them the better way to be sitting at their workstation. Stay tuned as we will be covering other segments on office ergonomics in upcoming stories.
Rick Means, WRA’s Safety Specialist, is available to members to help draw up safety plans and suggest topics for safety meetings. Contact him at 360-943-9198 x18, or firstname.lastname@example.org.