Ergonomics Safety


Repetitive motion in excess can lead to pain and distress

Ergonomic concerns can be related to:

  • Cumulative or Repetitive Risk– which could cause problems over time, such as muscle or tendon aches from working from a static position;
  • Body Reaction– which may be a problem if something unexpected happens, such as losing your balance or control when over-reaching; or
  • Acute– which could cause an immediate injury, such as a muscle pull when bending over to pick up a heavy load

Safety in Motion uses the concept of “safety zones” to describe body actions or body positions that create or alleviate an ergonomic concern:

  • The “red zone” indicates a poor (stressed) body action or position;
  • The “yellow zone” indicates an improved (better) body action or position; and
  • The “green zone”is the preferred (best) body actionor position

Examples of cumulative or repetitive risk in the red zonemight include:

  • Sustained gripping or holding of a tool using the pinch grip (thumb and index finger wrapped around the handle);
  • Standing or kneeling on a hard surface; and
  • Working from a static posture over a period of time, for example working in a standing position with your feet glued to one spot.

The Safety in Motion preferred green zonesolutions would include;

  • Using the power grip to hold tools (grasping the handle of the tool with your middle, ring, and little fingers while relaxing your index finger and thumb);
  • Using an anti-fatigue mat when kneeling; and
  • Shifting your body position often as you work and taking re-energizer breaks when assigned to work in a fixed location.