Postural Guidlines Ergonomics
What is Postural Ergonomics?
Postural Ergonomics refers to the correct human posture while in work place during long hours desk jobs, during driving, or lifting heavy weights, repetitive movements or related musculoskeletal disorders to ensure proper anatomical and biomechanical alignment of the body thereby reducing unwanted stress on the muscles and ligaments.
Ergonomics injury is mainly caused due to high task repetition, forceful exertions and sustained awkward postures or the combination of these factors.
When we sit, two to three times of body weight is applied to the back and sustained faulty postures or prolonged sitting posture contributes to back pain and the loss of normal curvature of the spine.
Generally, we slouch, bend and push our neck forward during working on computers to look more closely to the screen which in long term leads to strained neck and back or restricted movements of the spine.
Follow Postural ergonomics because prevention is better than cure.
What is good posture?
Posture is the position in which the body is held upright against gravity while standing, sitting or lying down. Good posture involves training the body to stand, walk, sit and lie in positions where the least strain is placed on supporting muscles and ligaments during movement or weight-bearing activities.
Why postural ergonomics?
- For improving our posture.
- For healthy living by reducing strain mainly on neck and back.
- Keeps bones and joints in the correct alignment so that muscles are being used properly.
- Decrease the abnormal weight bearing of joint surfaces that could result in arthritis.
- Decreases the stress on the ligaments holding the joints of the spine together.
- Prevents the spine from becoming fixed in abnormal positions due to repetitive stress.
- Prevents fatigue because muscles are being used more efficiently, allowing the body to use less energy.
- Prevents strain or overuse problems.
- Prevents backache and muscular pain.
- Contributes to a good appearance.
Faulty Postural Ergonomics
Ergonomics- a solution not a problem!
- Proper body mechanics
- Job rotation to avoid prolonged repetitive tasks thereby reducing fatigue
- Changing position every 30-45minutes in workplace
- Counteractive stretch breaks to increase circulation
- Proper work techniques
- Use a chair that provides support for your lower back and has a cushioned seat with a contoured front edge
- Put your monitor close enough to your eyes so you can comfortably read text on the screen without leaning forward
- Adjust the chair accordingly:
Your upper arms Should be perpendicular to the floor, not stretched forward or angled backward
Your forearms, wrists and hands Should form a 90-degree angle with your upper arms
Your thighs Should be parallel to the floor and your lower legs perpendicular to the floor
Your wrists and palms Should not rest on sharp edges
- Footrests, portable lumbar back supports, or even a towel or small pillow can be used while sitting in an office chair, on soft furniture and while driving
- Using purses, bags, and backpacks that are designed to minimize back strain can also influence good posture
- When standing for long periods of time, propping a leg up on a foot rest, wearing supportive shoe orthotics, or placing a rubber mat on the floor can improve comfort
- Try to sleep in a position which helps you maintain the curve in your back (such as on your back with a pillow under your knees or a lumbar roll under your lower back; or on your side with your knees slightly bent). Do not sleep on your side with your knees drawn up to your chest
- When standing up from the lying position, turn on your side, draw up both knees and swing your legs on the side of the bed. Sit up by pushing yourself up with your hands. Avoid bending forward at your waist
- MANUAL THERAPY TECHNIQUES to correct the loss of normal curvature of spine
- CORE STRENGTHENING TECHNIQUES to maintain the alignment and stability of the joints and build muscular endurance