If you are looking for some simple ways to make your life a whole lot better, then ergonomics
can help. Whether you have a repetitive stress injury
, a difficult job, or just want to live a better and healthier life, these ergonomic New Year Resolutions can have dramatic effects.
Exercise 30-60 minutes three times a week. It is simple yet effective and you will thank yourself for sticking with this resolution. Your overall health is critical to all things ergonomic.
The healthier you are the more productive you are. You will also be able to resist developing repetitive stress injuries better. Poor overall health is a key cause for developing a repetitive stress injury.
When you settle on an exercise make sure you research what repetitive stress injuries you might develop from it and how to prevent them.
Stretching is one of the simplest things you can do for your health. The health benefits are phenomenal and you can get a good stretch in as little as two minutes (though longer is better).
Stretching increases blood flow and reduces fatigue. It invigorates and de-stresses the body. Stretch at least once every two hours.
Drink 8 glasses of pure water a day. There's more to how much you should drink daily but 8 glasses is a good rule of thumb. It doesn't get much simpler than this.
Proper hydration is often overlooked as a factor in injury and fatigue, but it can be the main culprit behind it. Being dehydrated ruins your body and your mood. Just drink and you'll feel, act and work better.
Take a look at how you work and what you do. Find ways to improve it. You can use a task analysis
to identify areas that could be made more efficient. Then use sound ergonomic principles to adjust the task or tools to make things more comfortable and efficient.
If you work at a desk or computer you can follow this guide to setting up an ergonomic computer station.
Ergonomic tools come in many forms. Use them. Whether it is a pen, a chair or a gardening trowel, chances are someone has developed an ergonomic tool for you. The problem is that calling it ergonomic doesn't make it ergonomically sound. Check out the ergonomic buying guide
for good candidates.
6. Evaluate Your Sleeping ConditionsIf you do not sleep well you will not feel or act right. Lack of sleep has dramatic effects on your physical capabilities and your mental acuity and judgement. You owe it to yourself to do whatever it takes to get a good night's rest.
In part ergonomics is about reducing stress. Typically it focuses on reducing repetitive stress in a given task. However external stress (physical and mental) can seriously impact that task, not to mention effect your health and put you in a bad mood. For ergonomics to have the best impact on your life all stress should be reduced as much as possible.
Getting a physical medical exam should be a priority. It keeps you aware of problems that might be developing and lets you plan to prevent and treat them (that's where ergonomics can come in). So get an exam, and then listen to what the examiner tells you.
Keep a pain journal to identify where improvements can be made. Keeping track of your pain is a key indicator of problem areas and tools. Once identified you can take corrective ergonomic actions.
10. Treat YourselfAll this work would be for nothing if you didn't get a reward. Yes, a healthier life is reward enough. But why don't we take that healthier life out for a spin or get some cool ergonomic tool to make it even better.