Most operatives are not set up correctly when using their workstations so here we give you ten tips on how to set up a workstation for use. By using these ten tips you will soon have the ideal working conditions for Display Screen Equipment (DSE) and operatives working safely.
1. Chair - Adjust your chair correctly for the most comfortable position ensuring your feet are positioned flat on the floor in front of you. Avoid excess pressure from the edge of the seat on the backs of your legs and knees.
2. Monitor - Make sure your monitor is positioned directly in front of you and, level with your eyes so your head is facing slightly downwards. Keep your screen surface clean and adjusted correctly.
3. Keyboard - Adjust your keyboard to get a good comfortable keying position, with space in front of the keyboard for resting your hands and wrists. Ensure you keep your wrists straight while typing using a soft touch on the keys without over stretching your fingers.
4. Mouse - Position the mouse within easy reach, so it can be used with the wrist straight. Sit upright and close to the desk, so you don't have to work with your mouse arm stretched. Support your forearm on the desk and don't grip the mouse too tightly. Hold the mouse lightly pressing the buttons softly, move your entire forearm avoiding flexing your wrists from side to side.
5. Posture - Ensure you are seated upright with your lower back being supported by sitting back into the chair helping maintain good posture. Avoid sitting in the same position for long periods ensuring you change your posture regularly. Some movement is desirable however, avoid stretching and twisting to reach for items you need.
6. Eyes - Take regular breaks away from the screen varying your tasks as appropriate. Every 20 minutes or so re-focus your eyes on an object in the distance to allow them to blink and get refreshed.
7. Eye Tests - Have your eyes tested every 2 years at least so that they are not working harder than they have to.
8. Environment - Make sure you have enough work space to take whatever documents or other equipment you need. Also ensure there is space under your desk to move your legs freely clearing away any unnecessary obstacles such as boxes, bags and other objects.
9. Equipment - Consider using a footrest, keyboard wrist rest and mouse wrist rest as these maybe helpful as appropriate.
10. Breaks - Take regular breaks so that your body does not become too static and maybe speak to a colleague rather than e-mail them.
These simple tips will aid operatives and improve the overall working conditions for staff employed on display screen equipment.
Nigel J Welford is a qualified Health & Safety professional and believes in making health and safety as simple as possible whilst still being effective and meeting all the regulations. For his free report "The Secret To How Health & Safety Can Improve Your Business And Profits: 7 Everyday Pitfalls To Avoid" from http://bit.ly/TI68sD
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