Gone are the days of a one-size-fits-all office cubicle. Gone are the days of the assumption that each employee is made the same and gone are the days of unawareness previously shown to the health hazards of office cubicle life. Businesses are increasingly becoming more and more aware of employee health in the workplace. Attention is being shown to the configuration of an employee’s office cubicle and the chair they sit in. There are measures that can be taken in an office cubicle to help avoid the potential health hazards of an office cubicle; such as back pain, eye trouble, joint pains, headaches and more. The key to alleviating some of the health hazards that can be experienced in the work place – office cubicle ergonomics.
Office cubicle ergonomics are essential in promoting a healthier employee. Factors to consider when discussing ergonomics include – the type of chairs employees are sitting in, the height of the monitors and desks, how close someone sits to their computer, the lighting in the office and more all factor in to the ergonomics of the office cubicle. Let’s take a look at some of the items to consider when creating an ergonomic office cubicle.
The Office Chair
One of the most crucial aspects of creating an ergonomic office cubicle is type of chair employees will sit on. There are a countless number of office chairs to choose from, but what is important are the types of features that each chair possesses. A good ergonomic chair, like the Herman Miller Aeron or the Steelcase Leap chair are stuffed full of ergonomic features designed to tailor to each individual’s needs. Important features of an ergonomic chair include: seat height adjustment, adjustable arms, sufficient back support (lumbar support) and seat depth adjustment. Seat height adjustment is important because an individual’s feet should be planted on the floor, creating a 90 degree angle at their knees. The adjustable arms should be placed at a height where the individual’s arms can rest at the work surface’s level; this minimizes the strain on the wrists. Lumbar support is important for protecting an individual’s back by providing extra support at the lower portion of one’s back. Lumbar support helps with one’s posture.
Computer Monitor Height
The height of one’s computer monitor is important because a computer screen that is too low or too high can strain the user’s neck and potentially prevent long-term injury. Invest in an adjustable monitor arm. Adjustable monitor arms allow the user to dictate how high or low they need the computer screen, while allowing the flexibility to swivel the screen around to show other individual’s their screen. The monitor should be positioned at the user’s eye-level.
Lighting In the Office
To help avoid eye strain and headaches, properly illuminate the workspace. Low level lighting can not only affect productivity, but can lead to eye strain and other problems. The CSA recommended lighting level for computer work is 500 lux. Furthermore, removing items that emit a glare can also help minimize eye strain.