Position for Success – Improving Your Office Ergonomics

person typing on laptop at desk

Ergonomics is an important and beneficial tool for those who choose to utilize it. While many people recognize this term in the office as related to awkwardly shaped keyboards and overpriced roller chairs, there’s much more to it than that. 

Ergonomics is primarily about the health and comfort of those who utilize it. Sitting in an office for hours on end can cause stress and even harm to the body. Implementing ergonomics can alleviate this pain and tension and improve your overall health. Here’s what you should know about improving your office ergonomics, providing a safer workplace, and positioning yourself for success!

What Are Ergonomics?

Ergonomics is the result of keeping in mind the limitations and movements of an individual when designing the area in which that individual will work. Put simply, ergonomics in practice is designing and arrangings items and tools in a way that makes human interaction safe and efficient and therefore safer.

The science behind ergonomics is all about creating an environment that allows your body to position itself and moves about naturally. Regardless of your job, sitting in an unnatural position all day can cause harm to your joints and muscles. Improper lifting techniques or straining yourself to get something off a high shelf multiple times a day are all examples of improper ergonomics. Ergonomics are everywhere, and when you understand the benefits of proper ergonomics, you’ll see why they’re so important and how you should implement them into your daily life.

Benefits Of Ergonomics

There are many benefits to proper ergonomics, specifically for health reasons. When your body moves and sits in a position that is not ergonomically friendly, it can result in stress through awkward positions, extreme temperatures, and repeated movement. Over time this can cause discomfort, fatigue, pain, and even result in musculoskeletal disorders. 

Allowing your body to move about naturally is a way to combat these threats and improve overall health for your body. Simple solutions such as lowering or raising a surface height can result in less bending or strain on your back. Poorly made telephone headsets can result in neck strain. Understanding what changes to make can make your office space more ergonomically friendly and provide health benefits to you. Here are some changes you can make!

How To Improve Office Ergonomics

  1. Regularly adjust your office chair as needed. Your body will tell you when it’s time for a change, listen to it. What’s comfortable in the morning may not be comfortable after lunch.
  2. Sit with your monitor about 16-29 inches away from your face. This inhibits overexposure to the light and keeps you from squinting to focus. 
  3. Tilt your keyboard so that your arms remain straight while typing. Bending your wrists can cause unnecessary joint fatigue.
  4. Sit straight up and provide yourself with plenty of lower back support. For cheap chairs with little to no support, consider placing a pillow or cushion between your lower back and the chair. 
  5. Arrange your desk to allow for easy access to anything frequently used. Having to stretch out and reach every time you need a pen can cause injury. This is particularly important. There are numerous stories of employees who have thrown out their backs picking up pens or other small items. This is often the result of tension built up over long periods of time due to unnatural postures. The act of “picking up a pen” is simply the final straw before the body can’t take anymore. 
  6. Don’t hold a phone between your head and shoulder. If you use the phone, hold it to your head with your hand. If you repeatedly use a phone daily, consider investing in a good headset. 

Although proper ergonomics can be instituted by using special chairs and other uniquely designed equipment, it’s really about creating an environment that allows your body to move about naturally. Think through your daily routine and ask yourself what causes the most stress on your body. Find a way to remove those issues, and you’re well on your way to improving your office ergonomics and positioning yourself for success!

How Can We Help?

Work Health Solutions offers comprehensive healthcare solutions for your medical needs, including injury prevention. Our qualified team treats patients and employers alike and always provides top-quality service. Our quality service is backed by years of experience working with academic and research institutions, corporate healthcare, Fortune 25 companies, small governments, and local businesses. Reach out today with any questions you may have about how we can assist you!

Work Health Solutions

Work Health Solutions

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Work Health Solutions is dedicated to preserving a safe work environment and improving existing programs and care for local, regional and national organizations.

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Dr. Michael Tenison

A series of notable accomplishments distinguish Dr. Michael Tenison’s career in medical operations and healthcare management:

  • Successfully led medical operations at a national healthcare provider, focusing on optimizing healthcare delivery and patient outcomes.
  • Oversaw the regional medical practices in key markets like Oregon and Northern California, ensuring consistent, quality medical care and service delivery.
  • Demonstrated exceptional leadership in building and mentoring a large medical provider team, enhancing team performance and patient care standards.
  • Implemented strategic company policies and protocols, significantly improving center efficiency, clinical quality, and patient experiences.
  • Played a pivotal role in financial planning and identifying growth opportunities for healthcare services, contributing to the organization’s overall success.
  • Served as a primary point of contact for regional employer clients and insurance companies, fostering strong relationships and effective communication.
  • Maintained high medical care and case management standards through diligent supervision, chart audits, and performance metric analysis.

Dr. Matt Feeley

Dr. Matt Feeley is a renowned figure in military aviation medicine, with a robust background in occupational and environmental medicine from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. 

  • Former Naval Flight Surgeon, exemplifying his expertise in aerospace medicine and commitment to military health.
  • Served with distinction at NSA Bahrain and HSM-37, earning the COMPACFLT Flight Surgeon of the Year award for exceptional medical service.
  • Supported U.S. Marines VMFA-323 aboard the USS Nimitz, MACG-38, and VMU-3, demonstrating versatility and leadership in diverse medical environments.
  • Broad interests and significant contributions in global health, corporate medicine, and aerospace medicine, highlighting his multidisciplinary approach.
  • Proven track record as a dynamic leader, well-equipped to face the challenges in a fractional medical directorship role with innovative solutions.

Dr. Glen Cheng

A physician-attorney with a dedication to healthcare innovation, informatics, and digital health.

  • Currently spearheads employee health protection and promotion within the VA Pittsburgh Health Care System.
  • Trained in residency at Harvard, achieving board certification as a physician; also a licensed patent attorney with experience as FDA regulatory counsel.
  • Co-founded Acceleromics, a consulting firm providing clinical and regulatory guidance to digital health startups.

Erin Davis

 Chief Clinical Officer at Work Health Solutions, certified in Adult-Gerontology (AGNP-C) and Athletic Training (ATC).

  • Oversees clinical operations and ensures high clinical standards across the company’s national field staff.
  • Former Manager of Clinic Operations and Occupational Health Nurse Practitioner at Stanford University Occupational Health Center (SUOHC).
  • Specialized in treating occupational injuries and illnesses, and provided medical surveillance and travel medicine consults at Stanford and SLAC National Accelerator Lab.
  • Dedicated to sports and occupational injury treatment and prevention.
  • Assistant Clinical Faculty at UCSF, mentoring students in clinical rotations within the Adult Gerontology and Occupational and Environmental Health Program.
  • Holds leadership roles as Treasurer and President Elect of the California El Camino Real Association of Occupational Health Nurses (CECRAOHN), affiliated with the American Association of Occupational Health Nurses (AAOHN).

Dr. Robert Goldsmith

Expert in benefits design and onsite innovation with specialization in the pharmaceutical industry.

  • Previous role as Executive Director for Employee Health at Novartis Services, Inc., leading health services and clinical support.
  • Instrumental in creating an integrated healthcare system at Novartis.
  • Former private practice in internal medicine in Stamford, Connecticut, and Medical Director consultant for GTE Corporation.
  • Transitioned to GE as a Global Medical Director in 2000.
  • Holds a medical degree from Albert Einstein College, an MPH from the University of Connecticut, and completed training at Greenwich Hospital and Yale-New Haven Medical Center.
  • Assistant professor in the Department of Medicine at the Vagelos School of Medicine, Columbia University.
  • Serves as a team physician for high school athletes in Stamford.
  • Published works on occupational health risks, primary prevention, and exercise-induced asthma.