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Choosing Ergonomics

Among the tools of the office are computers and telephones ... lights ... staplers ... and even paper clips.  To be helpful, any tool - computer or paper clip - needs to meet basic ergonomic criteria for accommodating people and the work process.  

One of the most important tools is office furniture: the chairs people sit on; the work surfaces for reading and writing tasks; drawers and other storage areas.  

The following principles provide a platform for understanding the relationship between ergonomics and office tools - including furniture:

Each individual possesses unique limitations.  Good design reflects an understanding of the need to accommodate physical characteristics over a broad range of individuals.

Good design considers such non-physical attributes as human skills, emotions, needs, motivation, and the ability to learn.

Musculoskeletal injury is likely to occur when physical limitations are exceeded, especially during repetitive tasks.  The risk of injury can be reduced by a combination of proper physical support for the body, well-designed tools, and a reasonable work process.

 

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