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Ergonomics: Proper Sitting Position-Spine and Neck care.

Ergonomics is the process of designing or arranging workplaces, products and systems so that they fit the people who use them. To achieve best practice design, Ergonomists use the data and techniques of several disciplines:
  • Anthropometry: body sizes, shapes; populations and variations 
  • Biomechanics: muscles, levers, forces, strength environmental 
  • Physics: noise, light, heat, cold, radiation, vibration 
  • Body systems: hearing, vision, sensations 
  • Applied psychology: skill, learning, errors, differences 
  • Social psychology: groups, communication, learning, behaviours. Click Here. 
Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs) are among the most frequently reported causes of lost or restricted work time. Musculoskeletal disorders affect muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves and blood vessels. According to Bureau of Labor Statistics, MSDs cause 33% of all work related injuries and illness cases. Click Here.

Spine Ergonomics:

Low Back Pain (LBP) is an immense burden to the industry. Prolonged postures, awkward postues, repetitive lifting, heavy lifting, lifting in wrong posture, sedentary life style/occupation, personal risk factors of the person may all contribute to LBP (or back pain). Click Here

Correct Seating Posture:

Knees, ankles, elbows should all be at an angle little more than 90 deg (i.e relaxed). Arms should be straight or at 20 degree. Ankles should be in front of knees.  Feet should be fully touching the ground. Trunk should be upright or 20 degrees leaning back. Do not bend forward, do not hold your shoulders stiff, do not droop your neck.
The computer monitor or the view of your work table should be within 10 to 30 degrees within the line of sight. Click Here. Keep neck and head upright with your ears aligned to your shoulders.

The below picture is taken from Myoclinic. It rightly demonstrates distance of monitor from your eyes, level of knees (at the level of hips) etc. Click Here.

Leave a gap of 4 to 6 inches in front of your desk to rest your wrists while your type. Place a wrist rest if needed, to keep your wrists straight.


Prevention is better than cure. Physical exercise plays a major role in preventing MSDs and improves ergonomics. Most effective exercises are stretching exercises like yoga, posture exercises, walking, body weight exercises. You need to warm your body up with mild to moderate exercise every morning before you put it to work. Important thing to remember regarding exercise is to not force your body, always listen to your body. If you have back or join pain, do not do the exercise which aggravates the pain. Consult a doctor, take medicine and rest, start the exercise after the pain has subsided. When you get back from work, you take a warm bath with some essential oil added in your bath to relax your mind and body and for a good night's sleep. 


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