Ergoweb® Learning Center

We’ve published and shared thousands of ergonomics articles and resources since 1993. Search by keyword or browse for topics of interest.

Open Access Articles

April 7, 2011

Research: It’s Time to Update Chair Design Standards to Accomodate Overweight and Obese Populations

Current chair testing protocols called for in USA industry standards from BIFMA/ANSI are based on criteria that is decades old, and does not include the effects of modern computer based office work, nor the significant trend of increasing weight among the adult working population. Texas A&M researchers Benden, Fink and Congleton conducted an in situ study of user habits that affect office chair design (in situ -- meaning they tested participants in actual chair use in real office conditions). Based on their results, the authors provide specific recommendations for updating existing testing standards, and for developing new standards specifically for emerging Heavy Duty and Bariatric Office Seating standards.
April 6, 2011

Are These Products Ergonomic?

There's been a lot of talk within the ergonomics community lately about the use of the word "ergonomic(s)" or "ergonomically designed" in product marketing claims. There's an evolving consensus that the ergonomics community "needs to do something," but what exactly needs to be done to protect the public from dubious or false claims remains to be seen. Peter Budnick reviews a variety of products being marketed as ergonomic and poses some interesting questions to stimulate your thoughts.
March 23, 2011

The World

ORLANDO, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Equipois Inc., designer and manufacturer of the zeroG
March 17, 2011

New Study Links Mobile Hand-Held Devices with Musculoskeletal Symptoms

In work funded by the Office Ergonomics Research Committee (OERC), Canadian researchers Berolo, Wells and Amick performed an epidemiological study to investigate the prevalence of upper body musculoskeletal pain in mobile device users. According to the researchers, "this is the first study to provide empirical evidence of relationships between mobile device use and musculoskeletal symptoms of the upper extremity and neck." Further, "our results show a consistent relationship between mobile device use and pain in the ..."
March 9, 2011

Conclusion: What’s the Hubbub About Ball Chairs? Are They Really Ergonomic?

This is the final article in a series started by guest contributor Ian Chong. In the first two articles Ian shares the thought process he and an informal task force of professionals and users from various backgrounds as they debated the merits of using a fitness / exercise ball as a substitute for an office task chair, or more specifically, the merits of calling such an intervention 'ergonomic'. The series continues to generate a great deal of interaction and comment from the Ergoweb Community and beyond. Read on to learn their conclusions ...
March 8, 2011

Ergonomics in Disaster Response

In the past few days, tornadoes have damaged several southern US cities, and a volcano has erupted in Hawaii. Earthquakes devastated portions of New Zealand, Chile, and Haiti in the past 14 months, and the list goes on. In the USA State of Minnesota, where guest contributor Philip Jacobs, MS, CPE, CSP resides, there are daily reminders of the threat for
February 23, 2011

Raise the Ergonomic Standard

Guest contributor Karl Marion adds his thoughts to the question of whether the field of ergonomics, and practicing ergonomists, need to "raise the bar" on the use of the word ergonomics in product and process design. He notes that standards are common in everyday life, and in many industries, and believes "it's time" for the ergonomics marketplace to do the same.
February 15, 2011

A Look at the Future: Ergonomics in the Wired World

We're quickly moving toward a wired world in which we interact with computers throughout our day. Our phones are mini-computers. Our work is computerized. Our entertainment is computerized. Gesturing, a term describing the body movements we use, like swiping fingers across your smartphone, are becoming commonplace. Peter Budnick shares a video depicting the wired, integrated computing world of the future and wonders what role ergonomics, and ergonomists, will play as these technologies progress.
February 3, 2011

New International Ergonomics Standards Address Visual and Auditory Design

Two new ISO International Standards will help make products, signs and displays more accessible to older persons and those with disabilities