What is Ergonomics?
Are you fed up of working on broken chairs and improperly organized computer workstations? Yes, then this article is for you. Read this. Do you know if you have found that your workstation at your workplace is not properly organized, you can talk to your employer and insurance company and can get ergonomic evaluation of your workstation completed and modify your workstation according to your needs and comfort. Now read what is ergonomics definition. According to me from what I have understood, ergonomics is defined as a body of knowledge about human abilities, limitations, and characteristics that are relevant to the design. The ergonomic design is the application of this knowledge for the design of tools, systems, machines, tasks, jobs and safe environments that are comfortable and provide effective use of human power without exploiting them. The term Ergonomics is obtained from Greek word ergos, which means work, and nomos, which means natural law or knowledge or study. Ergonomics has two main branches: One branch of ergonomics concerns to industrial ergonomics and occupational biomechanics, which focuses on the physical aspects of labor and human capabilities such as force, repetitions, and posture, and other branch of ergonomics concerns to a second discipline which is sometimes referred as "human factors", which is oriented to the psychological aspects of work and the mental workload and decision making process. The scope of ergonomics is very broad and it falls within various professions and academic careers such as engineering, physical therapy, industrial hygiene, occupational therapy, nursing, chiropractics, occupational medicine, and sometimes specialty ergonomics. Also, the ergonomics training is provided through courses, seminars, and conferences to many students around the world.
General objectives of ergonomics
The following points are among the general objectives of ergonomics and help employers and organizations and industries in:
- Reduction of occupational injuries and illnesses.
- Decreasing the disability costs for workers.
- Increasing productivity.
- Improving the quality of work.
- Lowering absenteeism.
- Applying existing rules.
- Decreasing the loss of raw material.
The methods by which we obtain general objectives of ergonomics are:
- Analysis and appreciation of risks in the workplace.
- Identification and quantification of risk conditions in the workplace.
- Recommendation of engineering and administrative controls to reduce risk conditions that are identified.
- Through providing education to supervisors and workers about the hazardous conditions at workplace and providing workplace safety.
What is industrial ergonomics?
The industrial ergonomics is not so new field of knowledge that is involved in the production field and is relatively new in many developing countries again due to the little knowledge of ergonomics and its implementation, but industrial ergonomics has been developed and applied in some large corporate in different developed countries of the world and has been becoming successful to meet its goals. Also, knowledge of industrial ergonomics is being spread all over the world through conferences on ergonomics, meetings, and ergonomics courses that are in high demand nowadays.
As it is really difficult to give full details of ergonomics in such a short time and space, I hope this article will help answer some of your questions on ergonomics and stimulate interest in ergonomics.
This was a general overview of ergonomics, which I have described above. In my upcoming hubs, I will discuss about overview of ergonomic practice and method and techniques in ergonomics applied to provide benefits to the employees and supervisors. Also, I will discuss how applying ergonomics to the workforce in any organization or industry can help in reduction of occupational injuries or illnesses to the employees, decrease the disability costs for workers, and lowering absenteeism thereby increasing productivity and quality of work done resulting in improved quality of life for all workers and the company itself.