The human body is a fragile system, and we put many demands on it every day. Activities like reaching to get supplies off of a shelf, sitting in front of a computer for hours every day, and moving heavy products around the shop can all take a toll on our bodies. In this three-day workshop, you will learn how to make your environment as ergonomic as possible in order to make daily tasks easier on your body and mind.
Injury Prevention Through Ergonomics
Personal Development Unit
What Will Students Learn?
- Define ergonomics and its related terms
- Identify where to get ergonomics information for your region
- Identify how ergonomics can be incorporated into your workplace
- Assess your environment for ergonomic hazards, create ways to resolve those issues, and plan for implementation
- Review and evaluate your ergonomic efforts
- Use change management techniques effectively
- Describe the basic principles of ergonomics
- Outline ergonomic practices for sitting, standing, lifting, carrying, pushing, and pulling
- Design an ergonomic workstation
- Identify important ergonomic features of tools and machines
- Understand the role that environmental factors (such as sound, air quality, and light) play in ergonomics
We will spend the first part of the day getting to know other participants and discussing what will take place during the workshop. Students will also have an opportunity to identify their personal learning objectives.
To begin, participants will define ergonomics and the types of injuries that result from unresolved ergonomic hazards. Participants will also explore the major risk factors of ergonomic injuries and the cost to the workplace. Then, participants will learn how to find out what legislation and regulation applies to their area.
The Role of Ergonomics in Your Workplace
This session will explore some different ways that workplaces can address ergonomic issues.
The Ergonomic Assessment Cycle
Like any effort, ergonomic improvement should be structured and scheduled. This session will give participants a framework that they can adapt and use for their ergonomic efforts.
Identifying and Assessing Ergonomic Hazards
Next, participants will look at the first two stages of the ergonomic cycle: identifying and assessing hazards. This session will provide participants with various methods and tools to identify ergonomic hazards, including sample checklists and symptom surveys. Participants will also have the opportunity to apply these skills to a case study.
Developing a Plan to Address Ergonomic Issues
This session will look at the third stage of the ergonomic cycle: planning for improvements. We will focus on the three key methods of hazard resolution: engineering controls, organizational changes, and individual changes. Participants will continue working on their case study and apply this new knowledge.
Identifying and Implementing Solutions
At this point in the cycle, you know what the major ergonomic hazards are and you know that there are three main categories of solutions. But where do you find concrete, practical ideas to resolve ergonomic hazards? This session will give participants a few starting points.
Obtaining Employee Buy-In
So far, we have covered a plan to identify, evaluate, and address ergonomic hazards in the workplace. However, all of your organization’s ergonomic efforts will not succeed without the cooperation of the employees who will be affected by the changes. This session will help participants understand the basics of change management.
Tips for Successful Implementation
This session will give participants some ideas for making ergonomic changes as easy as possible for employees.
Reviewing Your Ergonomics Program
Another important part of successful implementation and ergonomic hazard management is review and evaluation. This session will give participants a sample follow-up schedule and some key things to check for.
Basic Ergonomic Principles
Day Two of this workshop will begin with a discussion of some basic principles of ergonomics.
Optimal Sitting and Standing
This session will give participants some tips for making sitting and standing as ergonomic as possible. Participants will also identify some areas of improvement for their training facility.
Safe Lifting and Transporting
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, a large percentage of workplace injuries result from improper heavy lifting. This session will explore how ergonomics can make lifting, carrying, and transporting materials safer and easier.
Next, participants will learn how to design an ergonomic workstation. (This includes any kind of job where a desk is used, whether it involves a computer or not.)
Safe Tool Selection and Use
This session will explore safe tool design, ergonomic handgrips, and vibration measurements.
Creating an Ergonomic Environment
There are three components to an ergonomic environment: proper lighting, good air quality, and noise control. This session will explore each of these elements in depth. At the end of the session, participants will apply their knowledge to a case study.
Bringing It All Together
To wrap up the course, participants will examine a snapshot of a company at work, identify ergonomic hazards, and develop a solution plan.
At the end of the course, students will have an opportunity to ask questions and fill out an action plan.