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PC User’s Survival Guide Managing Preventable Injuries In the Office Environment Alan Graham COTA/L CECD Ergonomics From the Greek Ergo (“Work”) and Nomos (“Law”) Means fitting the work and the worker together so that both are well matched to one another. Fictional Computer Villains • Plot to take over the world • Enslave people to serve machines • Passionlessly terminate opponents • See and Know everything Real Computer Villains • Create physical, emotional and mental pain gradually • Enslave users through promised (though never realized) productivity • Easily loose critical information Human Nature and Adaptation When faced with a challenging and important job, human nature is to first adapt the worker to the work. If, however, the job frequently requires this kind of adaptation or the work requires awkward postures and highly repetitious or resistive effort, the outcome may eventually be a worker injury. The Bucket Model Rest Nutrition Proper Exercise Worker Resources Job Demands The Bucket Model Rest Nutrition Proper Exercise Worker Resources Job Demands Recognize the Symptoms of an Office Related MSD* Radiating burning pain, numbness or “pins and needles” in the trunk, neck or extremities. Soreness or fatigue in arms, legs and back that occurs while working and doesn’t go away within an hour. Pain in the upper extremity, back or neck often not noted until the end of the day which prevents sleep or wakes at night. The worker avoids carrying children or participating in tasks they normally enjoy because those tasks are now uncomfortable. *Musculoskeletal Disorder Common Office MSD’s •Carpal Tunnel •Neck and Back Strain •Shoulder Strain or Tendonitis •Lateral and Medial Epicondylitis •DeQuervain’s Tendonitis MSD Factors in the Office 1. Nerve compression 2. Repetitive strain 3. Prolonged static loading (especially when combined with resistive pinch or grip) 4. Awkward postures 5. Lack of appropriate breaks or excessive work pace 6. Sedentary workers performing occasional resistive tasks 7. Stressors which modify the normal responses to discomfort, pain and fatigue Acquired and Inherited Comorbid Factors 1. Glandular disorders 2. Genetic abnormalities 3. Bony abnormalities 4. Neurological disorders 5. Autoimmune disorders 6. Connective tissue disorders 7. Other diseases or injuries The Worker The average office worker rarely receives instruction how to properly set up her area for comfort and efficiency Normally she has arranged her area by trial and error …Or she has left it very close to the arrangement of the person who just clocked out (Who also never adjusted it) Back rest adjusted to provide good lumbar Seated Sitting Posture support Good Seating is foundational to overall good office worker posture and position. Trunk upright or slightly reclining (10 degrees or less) One fist width (3-3 1/2”) knee to chair edge Seated Rule of 90’s Elbows at 90 degrees or slightly less with a neutral shoulder Knees hips and ankles at 90 degrees or slightly less Seated or Neutral Neck Standing Neck should be neutral to slightly forward flexed Neck should never be held in extension while working Dynamic rotation of the head should be limited to 30 degrees side to side Static rotation of the head to face the monitor or work is not acceptable Look familiar? This posture should be corrected with a headset or use of a speaker phone. Twisting and Bending Seats should pivot, not backs or hips May be a clue the space is too restricted May indicate flaws in workstation setup or work flow May relate to bad habits and require education of staff Static Working Postures Static loading causes an anaerobic condition in skeletal muscle. Sustained hold of limbs or objects against gravity or resistance creates resting tension. Symptoms of fatigue, stiffness and pain result from “doing little or nothing at all”. Workers should vary tasks at least every two hours. Interface Pressures 32mm of mercury is sufficient to cut off capillary blood flow Nerve is unforgiving of sustained pressures in every case Reach and Excursion How far is too far to reach when seated? Comfort Zone Horizontal Arc of Grasp Optimum Working Distance 30” wide x 17” forward reach 10” 12 – 17” 22 – 26” 20” 39” 63” Maximum vs. Comfortable Reach 63 inches As as general rule forward reach should be limited to 2/3 of maximum for routine seated work 0 32 inches Appropriate Breaks Breaks are not always rest periods Balance work activities with worker “biorhythms” Change position and tasks at least every two hours Tasks must use different muscle groups and vary requirements for posture, pinch and grip This new PC is great! I especially love the built in drink holder! The Workstation Ideal VS Reality Maximum Adjustability Since workers vary in shape, size, gender and stature the workstation needs to be flexible The Worker and Workstation should “fit one another” Sitting Desk Height 30-33 inches for writing desk 23-29 inches for keyboarding* ? * An add on adjustable keyboard tray may often be used to correct desk height Standing Counter Clearance Make sure there is enough space to allow you to step close to the counter. Standing Height Standard Use lower counters or cutouts when handling stacks of books and heavy loads. Standing Neutral Relaxed Spine should be balanced Move feet to turn – don’t twist Antifatigue mat Try to vary leg position (foot rail or footrest) Sensible shoes Rotate jobs and readjust the workstation as needed Establish right to left work flow The workstation should accommodate logical flow of work and be able to contain all routinely used items without extended reach. As a rule, when using things infrequently, get up and take a break from the workstation to retrieve them. Proper Mouse Placement The mouse should always be positioned on the same level and as close to the keyboard as possible (NOT ALONE ON THE DESKTOP!) It should never require extended reach or contact with the edge of any surface It is often necessary to add an additional mousing surface to keyboard drawers or trays. Keyboards In most cases keyboards should be flat or declined not inclined to achieve neutral wrist flexion Never use split or folded keyboards with typists that need to look at the keys Wrist rests are not recommended Inclined keyboards are a throwback to typewriters The CPU Desktop vs. Tower On desk vs. under desk Access and dust issues Monitor Monitor distance should be a minimum of 20 inches (no more than 30) Brightness needs to be about 10x greater than a sheet of paper held to the screen. Position so that no light source reflects from it’s surface when it is off Flat screens provide a much smaller footprint Footrests For seated work footrests are needed to bring a short worker up to a fixed height desk Otherwise use them if you need to but not routinely Footrests may be required for workstations that have an inclined work surface or at a counter (alternate feet) Hazard Control Workforce exposure to all current and potential hazards should be prevented or controlled by using engineering controls wherever feasible and appropriate, work practices and administrative controls, and personal protective equipment. The Artsy side of Ergonomics: or “some lessons learned the hard way” •Solve only the current problem without causing a new one •When possible, manage the root cause not the “obvious” one •Total solutions are often impossible, improvement may be enough •Some workers can’t physically tolerate the job they were assigned •Be careful not to create “workstation envy” in the office The Artsy side of Ergonomics: or “some lessons learned the hard way” •The worker frequently has at least a part of the solution – listen •Workers will often ignore your recommendations and resist change – even if they requested help •Recommend “new” only when “old” is unfixable or impractical •Cost may be a legitimate barrier to solution – or an excuse •Both employer + worker need feel the fix is “worth the bother” The Artsy side of Ergonomics: or “some lessons learned the hard way” •During the break-in time symptoms may worsen before improving Bad isn’t Always “ Bad ” : A brief disclaimer: If a workstation is rarely used throughout the workday (less than 2 hours total) and/or the worker is at the keyboard for a few minutes at a time and constantly changing position an ergonomically awful setup may be fine for the present. Stretches Stretches and desk exercises are controversial Theory: Unused muscle gets a chance to lengthen and rest, blood flow is increased. Why not take a walk down the hall, file reports or do other productive tasks instead? A little shameless self promotion firstname.lastname@example.org (440) 285-6398
"Office Ergonomics PowerPoint Presentation"