As a testament to the importance of ergonomics in today's world, the proliferation of Web sites chock full of content should give you pause. (While you do, stretch a little, close your eyes and take a few deep breaths...)

We have selected these articles and guides because they offer a lot of information. Some of it may be conflicting, but an understanding and application of the basic concepts will have a beneficial effect on the quality of your work and your life.

Proper computing ergonomics is a combination of your physiology, your work environment and equipment, the nature of the task routines you regularly perform and the (good or bad) postural habits you have developed.

It is very important to realize that, in the end, the only true judge of what is proper for you is you. The guidelines offered on these pages as well as those from professional consultants and trainers are just a starting point.

REMEMBER, IF IT HURTS... STOP!

Repetitive stress injuries are compounded by ignoring them and continuing the activity without eliminating the cause of the stress.

First see a medical specialist to determine a course of action concerning your body, then seek out a solution that meets your particular needs.

Ergonomics - Articles, FAQs and Guides

Ergoworld: A comprehensive meta site provided by Interface Analysis Associates is divided into three sections on ergonomics (office ergonomics, industrial ergonomics, injury prevention/treatment) and three sections on human factors (HCI/usability, air & ground HF, and product design).

The Repetitive Strain Disorders (RSI) FAQ from IMPACC USA is an excellent source of information concerning disease of the musculoskeletal system produced by a gradual build up of tiny amounts of damage occuring on a daily basis as a result of repetitive motions and/or sustained postures.

Although Allscan Distributors Inc. of Calgary (Alberta, Canada) is a consultancy and vendor, the quality of the information on their web site is too great to chance your missing them, so we've included them here. Ergonomics At Work: Ergonomic awareness, the first step to improving health and productivity. This is an extensive collection of original content relating to office ergonomics and worth a visit.

In a sense, the same goes for this association of ergonomics consultants in the U.K. Check out Health and Safety HomePage with up to date information, recent news, case histories and listings of services and consultants in the field of health and safety.

In the article, Ten Ways to Reduce the Potential For Developing Repetitive Motion Injuries, Stephen A.Marshall of Ergonomic Sciences Corporation, lists a number of ways you can acheive maximum ergonomic benefit from minimum effort and expense. Worth reading.

You must visit e-stretch.net: This site provides stress-busting stretch sessions to combat the ill-effects of computer use. Featuring Audio and text guidance, plus a host of health and RSI related web resources.

The Argus Clearinghouse is a compilation of resources available on the internet. This is a link to rated directories and collections. Clearinghouse: Health & Medicine; Diseases and Disorders; RSI (Repetitive Stress Injury).

Telstra, a major Australian internet services company, offers a very worthwhile guide for students facing an intensive semester of computing at the university. Healthy Learning: Basic material on setting up a good computer workplace.

Ergonomics.org, is provided as a service by Alexander Technique Nebraska and The Ontario Centre for the Alexander Technique. This site relates the principles of ergonomics to real-world questions of posture and movement patterns.

Computer Ergonomics; Living with computers, by Dr. Charles Daniels, D.C., is an extensive collection of original material from a chiropractor's point of view and, judging from the web site, one who is quite familiar with computers.

CTDNews is a leading source for information on workplace repetitive motion and stress injuries and illnesses. Issues covered include carpal tunnel syndrome to low-back pain. You can sign up here for their informative newsletter.
Family PC's article on Comfortable Computing covers many important aspects of ergonomics. Starting with the science of setting the setting for efficiency and safety and progressing to customizing your computer's Windows or Macintosh desktop for each member of the family, setting up your hard drive, and picking just the right input device for your family.

From the Haworth Office Journal, we have Developing a Corporate Ergonomics Program: recommendations to combat the increasing number of workplace injuries.

The Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory has put together one of the best corporate policy and ergonomic guides we've seen online. Ergonomics. Definitely worth a visit.

Here's another consultant's site, Ergonomic Resources HomePage, by Scott Wright, MS Human Factors & Ergonomics - K.S.Wright Consulting, which offers an extensive collection of links to resources for both the worker and the practitioner.

Mikael Ericsson, Linköping University, has compiled HCI Resources: WWW/Internet Resources with links to resources, indexes and collections related to HCI. Last updated 15-May-99.

Occupational Overuse Syndrome Questions: by Ergonomist Frank Darby - Occupational Safety and Health Service Department of Labour New Zealand, offers more than just a point of view. It is a snapshot of the issues facing small and large businesses, institutions and computer users in general.

Resources on HCI by Gary Perlman is a serious, in-depth site devoted to computer interface design and research. NOTE: Do not miss his columns on HCI.

Stretching and Flexibility; Everything you never wanted to know, by Brad Appleton, is probably the best guide on the 'net for the amateur physiologist. (I must quote his "fine print" for it applies to my endorsement as well) "In other words: "I'm not a doctor, nor do I play one on TV!" I can not be held liable for any damages or injuries that you might suffer from somehow relying upon information in this document, no matter how awful. Not even if the information in question is incorrect or inaccurate. If you have any doubt (and even if you don't) you should always check with your doctor before trying any new exercise or exercise technique." Besides, it's good advice.

Searching for an input device? This still serves well as a basic guide. Touch & Go; A Guide to PC Input Devices and Ergonomics by Bruce Brown (Originally published in the August 1995 issue of Computer Shopper).

Julie A. Zagorski, owner of Creative Computing in DeSoto, Missouri, has assembled WORKPLACES: Are You Ergonomically Correct? This is a well-researched checklist of office ergonomics from someone who obviously knows what she's talking about.

VDT Ergonomics Graphic illustrations enhance this site by Karen Allen of the University of Virginia.

Finally, Your Body, Your Computer; Answers to common questions about health and computing from Family PC, provides answers to the most common questions about your body and your computer.

How to List Your Company or Organization in the Ergonomics Resources Index
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