Do you work in an office? If so, you can't ignore the importance of ergonomic furniture. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) account for nearly one-third of all workers' compensation claims. MSDs, of course, are oftentimes higher among office workers because they are required to sit for long periods. By choosing ergonomic office furniture, you can minimize your risk of MSDs.
You should choose a computer desk that's capable of supporting your monitor, as well as other devices, at the appropriate height. For ergonomics, the top of your monitor should be parallel to your eyes. When looking forward, in other words, you should see the top of your monitor. If your computer desk is too low or too high, you may have to tilt your head to view your monitor, which can lead to neck strain over an extended period.
The single most important piece of office furniture is a chair. Most office workers spend seven hours a day sitting. When sitting for long periods such as this, you may develop back pain -- especially if your chair isn't ergonomically designed. What type of chair should you choose exactly?
When choosing a chair, make sure it has lumbar support. The term "lumbar" refers to the lower back region. The human spinal column doesn't extend vertically from the base of the neck to the tailbone. Rather, it has a natural curvature. Therefore, your chair needs to feature a cushion or padded section near the bottom to support this natural curvature and, thus, the lumbar region.
Don't forget to use a chair mat as well. Assuming your chair has casters on it, a chair mat will allow you to roll it. Chair mats typically consist of square- or rectangular-shaped pieces of flat and hard material, such as plastic. You can place them on the floor in front of your desk. With a chair mat, you can roll your chair with ease.
Keyboard and Mouse
In addition to a computer desk and chair, you should choose an ergonomic keyboard and mouse. Typing is a regular activity performed by most office workers. Regardless of the industry in which you work, you may find yourself typing for long periods. To protect against carpal tunnel syndrome and other related MSDs, you need to choose an ergonomic keyboard and mouse.