Not only can utilizing ergonomics keep you safe as an individual, but it can provide tremendous financial benefits to companies. According to its 2021 Workplace Safety Index, Liberty Mutual estimated that “U.S. businesses spend more than one billion dollars a week on serious, nonfatal workplace injuries.” By implementing ergonomics, that amount can decrease drastically.
Improper posture, excessive sedentary behaviors, and improper workspace set-ups lead to injury. Common injuries caused by poor ergonomics include cervical sprain/strain (a new phenomenon called “Text Neck”), low back pain/disc issues, carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, tenosynovitis, epicondylitis, ganglion cyst, and trigger finger.
Treating the signs and symptoms of an injury will not prevent the injury from happening again. Factors leading to the issue need to be identified and addressed. This is critical for symptom resolution and injury prevention.
Based on advice from ergonomic experts, the following diagram illustrates how to best set up a computer workspace that supports you and helps limit potential injury:
If your workstation is ergonomically correct, you should be able to attain proper seated posture, which includes the following:
Avoid repetitive behaviors, such as holding a phone between your ear and shoulder, especially one side significantly more than the other. So much of our daily life is spent in sitting posture, even away from our workstations, so make sure to get up and frequently move around.
Performing an ergonomic assessment on your workspace is the start to avoiding injuries and becoming pain-free. Ergonomics can apply to every job and is not limited to just a computer workstation. Physical therapy is a great way to get help in learning the correct ergonomics for your workspace and the correct posture to help prevent injury. If you’d like to learn more about how physical therapy can help with any pain you may be experiencing, contact us at Suburban Orthopaedics to discuss treatment and make an appointment.