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Resource Center » What is Ergonomics and What Makes a Product Ergonomical?

Understanding ergonomics and how it helps make products more user-friendly.

Ergonomics is an applied science that studies peoples' daily tasks, their work environments, and the way that people fit their work environments. People who study ergonomics look at the physical capabilities of a worker and strive to create the ideal job tasks, information, equipment, and surrounding work environment that best fits the individual.

A work environment can be an office, a factory, an outdoor work area, or any other location where tasks are performed. A person’s work environment can also be his home office. Comfort is the most important ergonomic element in a work environment, but efficiency is also an important part of ergonomics and is affected by a worker’s comfort.

An ergonomic promotional product makes you more comfortable and more efficient. A chair is a good example of a common ergonomic product; many people sit in chairs more often than they stand or lie down each day. A well-designed chair should provide good support for the lower and upper back and will improve posture over time.

Chairs should be selected to fit each person's needs and tastes. An office chair that fits a tall person will not always properly fit a short person. A person’s feet should rest flat on the floor with his or her legs bent in a natural and comfortable manner. A chair should have properly positioned arm rests that allow the sitter to comfortably use them while typing on his or her computer keyboard. A chair should also have wheels that allow for reasonable chair movement so that its user can reach what he or she needs.

The placement of a worker’s computer and computer accessories is ergonomically important as well. A computer screen should be set so that a worker can look straight at the screen without straining his neck. A computer keyboard and a USB mouse should be placed at a level and a location that minimizes hand and wrist fatigue, and many people use wrist rests to make it more comfortable when they type and use a mouse.

If a person has proper ergonomic products, then he will be more efficient because of higher comfort levels. In addition to ergonomic accessories, the proper placement of work materials can also help make a worker more efficient. For example, if a worker needs to access a file cabinet several times each day, then the worker will be more efficient if the file cabinet is closer to the worker’s desk. If a worker does not have to leave his office and walk a long distance to access needed files, then he will be more efficient and more productive.

Safety is another important part of an ergonomically-designed product. Accidents, fires, and other mishaps can be prevented with the proper placement of office furniture, and mistakes can be avoided when assembling products if they are properly labeled.

When you design a new office, it is worthwhile to purchase products that have a good ergonomic design. Ergonomical products will help prevent backaches, eye strain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and many other unfortunate conditions.

Article By Bubba

Bubba is the Quality Logo Products mascot. He may have started out as "just a stress ball," but he's come a long way since the company's launch in 2003. Bubba has been immortalized in numerous vector artwork designs for internal and external promotions, and you can see him change outfits on the Quality Logo Products homepage whenever a holiday rolls around. Oh, and he thinks pants are for the birds. You can connect with Bubba on Google+.

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