ergonomic mats

The Science Behind Ergonomics

by Andy on November 18, 2010

Ergonomic Chair“Ergonomics” is a term that we hear quite often in the workplace, but what does it actually mean?

Ergonomics comes from two Greek words: “ergon,” meaning work, and “nomoi,” meaning natural laws. It is the science of designing equipment and workplaces to fit different user needs by matching the job to the worker, rather than vice versa. Ergonomics individualizes workers’ capabilities and limitations within the workplace, and tailors equipment and workspaces accordingly.

The most serious ergonomic risk factors are found in jobs that require repetitive, aggressive, or lengthy exertions of the hands; continual heavy lifting; or extended sitting in static positions. Jobs with multiple risk factors are more likely to cause musculoskeletal problems such as carpal tunnel syndrome.

So what are the benefits? The primary advantage of ergonomics and work environments is the long and short-term safety of employees. This ultimately reduces costs by lessening the amount of money that may otherwise pay for worker’s compensation. Ergonomic tools such as screwdrivers and wire cutters also help improve efficiency in the workplace by simplifying everyday tasks, which in turn increases productivity.

Interested in making your workspace or home office more ergonomically-friendly? Ergonomically designed chairs are a good place to start!

Photo courtesy of www.seating-ergonomics.com.

{ 0 comments }

The Benefits of Anti-Fatigue Mats

by Andy on November 16, 2009

Anti-Fatigue Mats We’ve talked about ergonomic chairs before and how they’re important because of all the stress sitting puts on the back, spine, etc… Anti-fatigue mats are ergonomic mats that produce the same results but for standing workers rather than sitting workers.

Everyone knows standing in one spot for an extended period of time is just uncomfortable but it can also affect your health.

Here’s what happens when the body is subjected to prolong periods of standing:

  • Blood pooling in the legs – gravity wins in this situation…the blood is pulled down into the feet and standing in one spot for a long time limits proper circulation. Blood pooling can lead to varicose veins
  • Joint compression – each joint supports the weight of the body parts above it…for example, joints in the feet and ankles support the entire body. The weight from all the compression squeezes the fluid out of all the joints and one stationary position does not allow the fluid to enter the joint again which can cause wear and tear on the joints
  • Muscle fatigue – muscles are constantly tightened when standing which reduces the blood flow to these working muscles. Adequate blood flow acts as nourishment for the muscles and without it, the muscles can become exhausted

Anti-fatigue mats work because the mat itself stimulates circulation in the legs, feet and lower back; this subtle movement keeps blood pumping back to the heart (circulation) which prevents standing-induced fatigue. The mats also absorb and disperse shock.

It’s important to note, anti-fatigue mats reduce discomfort and fatigue but they are not a cure all for long periods of static standing. Also be aware, not all mats are designed to be anti-fatigue. Thick foam mats that are too cushioning can actually cause fatigue.

Here at All-Spec, we carry several brands of anti-fatigue mats. Our selection of anti-fatigue mats range from drainage mats and anti-microbial mats to interlocking tiles and floor runners.

3M Logo

Ergomat Logo

Rhino Mats Logo

Sierra Logo

Wearwell Logo

{ 3 comments }