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WORKSPACE DESIGN

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
General Principle for
Workspace Design
Goal of human factors:
1. to design systems that reduce human error
2. increase productivity
3. enhance safety and comfort
Workplace design is one of the major area in human
factors professionals can help improve the fit
between humans and machines and environments
Other considerable factors:
Cost
Aesthetics
Durability
Architectural characteristics
EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
General requirement guidelines for
designing workplace
1.Clearance requirement of the largest
users
2.Reach requirements of the smallest users
3.Special requirements of maintenance
people
4.Adjustability requirements
5.Visibility and normal line of sight
6.Component arrangement

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Clearance Requirement of
the Largest Users
Clearance problems are among of the most often
encountered and most important issues in
workplace design.
Example of clearance design problems:
1. The space between and around equipments
2. The height and width of passageways
3. The dimensions provided by knees, legs,
elbows, feet and head.
some worker may not able to access certain work areas if there is not
enough clearance provided.

Inadequate clearance may also force some workers to adopt an


awkward posture, thus causing discomfort and reducing productivity
EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Clearance dimensions are lower limit dimensions and
should be adequate for the largest users (typically
95%) who are planning to use the workplace, then
often adjusted upward to reflect the increase space
needs of a person with heavy clothes.
While design for lower limit dimensions such as
clearance spaces always means that high percentiles
are used in design, it does not always mean that male
data should be used all the time.
Clearly, for female-only workplaces, data from female
population should be used.
What is not obvious is that female data should be used
sometimes for mixed-sex workplaces.
Example:
The body width of a pregnant woman may need to be used to set the lower limit for
some design dimension

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Reach Requirements of the
Smallest User
Workers often need to extend their arms to
reach and operate a hand-operated device or to
use their feet to activate a foot pedal

In contrast to the clearance problem (set at the


largest user), reach dimension should be
determines on the basis of the reach capabilities
of the smallest users, typically 5th percentile.
Because heavy clothing reduces a persons reach
capability, raw data from an anthropometric table
need to be adjusted downward to reflect the
reduced reach capacity of a person with heavy
clothes.
EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Important concept: reach envelope (reach area) / 3D space in front of the
person that can be reached without leaning forward or stretching

The figure show only right


arms reach are.
For practical purposes, the
left arms reach can be
approximated as the mirror
image of right arms.
Establishing the shape and
size of the reach envelope for
various work situations is an
going research area
(Sengupta & Das, 2000)
The seated reach envelope for a 5th
percentile female
EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Objects that must be reached frequently should be located
within the reach area and as close to the body as possible.
If these objects have different sizes and weights, large and
heavy ones should be placed closer to the front of the worker.
A worker only allowed to lean forward occasionally to reach
something outside the work area, but such activities should not
become a frequent and regular part of jobs with short work
cycle.
In considering the issues of object location, manipulation and
reach, issues of strength and fatigue must also be addressed.
The same physical layout for two workers of the same physical
proportions will have very different long-term health and safety
implications if the workers differ substantially in their strength

Example:
The parts to be lifted and moved from one point to another point in the work space
differ substantially
EMM5710 in their weight
Industrial Ergonomics
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Special Requirements of
Maintenance People
Well designed workplace should consider not only
regular functions of the workplace and the workers who
work there everyday, but also the maintenance needs
and special requirements of maintenance personnel.
Because maintenance people often must access areas
that do not have to be accessed by regular workers,
designers must analyze the special requirements of the
maintenance people accordingly.
Because regular worker and maintenance people often
have different needs, an adjustable workplace becomes
particularly desirable.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Adjustability
Requirements
People are vary in many anthropometrics dimensions and
their own measurements may change as a function of
factors such as the clothes they wear on a particular day.
Because of the conflicting needs of different people, it is
often impossible to have one size fits all.
Designers should make sure that the adjustment
mechanisms are easy to use; otherwise users are often
intimidated by the complexity of the adjustment methods
and refuse to use them.
Example:
The ease adjusting automobile seating parameters can be greatly influenced both
by placing those control in a location where they can be easily reached and by
paying attention to issues of movement compatibility, so that the direction in which a
control should be moved to adjust the seat in a particular direction is obvious

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
There are many ways in which a workplace can
be adjusted.
4 General approach should be considered
summarized by Eastman Kodak Company (1986):

1. Adjusting the workplace


The shape and location of the workplace
may be adjusted to achieve a good fit
between the worker and the task

Example:
Front surface cutouts can be use to allow the worker to move closer to the reach
point so that reach requirement can be minimized.
Reach distance may also be reduced by height and orientation adjustments relative
to the worker and other equipments involved in the same task

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
1.Adjusting the worker position
relative to the task.
When workplace adjustments are not
feasible because they conflict with the
requirements of other vital equipment or
services or because they exceed budget
constraints.

Example:
Change the seat height and use of platforms or step up stools are some of the means
of achieving vertical adjustability. A swing chair maybe used to change the orientation
of the worker relative to the equipment

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
1.Adjusting the workpiece
Lift tables or forklift trucks can be used to
adjust the height of a workpiece.
Jigs, clamps and other fixtures can be used
to hold the workpiece in a position and
orientation for easy viewing and operation
Parts bins can help organize items for
easier access

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
1.Adjusting the tool
An adjustable-length hand tool can allow
people with different arm lengths to reach
objects at different distances.
In an assembly plant, such tools can allow a
worker to access an otherwise inaccessible
workpiece.
Similarly, in lecture hall, a changeable-length
pointing stick allow a speaker to point to items
displayed on varying locations of a projection
screen without much change in his/her
standing position and posture

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Visibility and Normal Line of
Sight
Designers should ensure that the visual
displays in a workplace can be easily and
ready by the worker.
This requires that the eyes are at the
proper positions with respect to viewing
requirements.
In this regards, the important concept of
normal line of sight is of particular
relevance
EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
The normal line sight is the preferred
direction of gaze when the eyes are at
condition. It is considered by most
researchers to be about 10 to 15 below the
horizontal plane

EMM5710 Industrial Normal lineof


Ergonomics sight and the range of easy eye rotation
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Grandjean, Hunting and Pidermann (1983)
reported the results of the study that showed that
the normal line of sight is also preferred line of
sight of computer users watching a screen.
Bhatnager, Durry and Schiro (1985) studied how
the height of a screen affected the performance,
discomfort and posture of the users.
They found that the best performance and
physical conform were observed for the screen
height closest to the normal line of sight.
Therefore, visual displays should be placed within
15 in radius around the normal line sight.
When multiple visual displays are used in a
workplace, primary displays should be given high
priority in a space assignment and should be
placed in the optimal location.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Presenting visual material within 15 around the
normal line of sight is not sufficient to ensure that it
will be processed.
The visual angle and the contrast of the material must
also be adequate for resolving whatever information is
presented there, a prediction that also must take into
account the viewing distance of the information as
well as the visual characteristics of the user.
Visibility analysis may also need to address issues of
whether critical signals will be seen if they are away
from the normal line of sight.
Can flashing lights in the periphery be seen?
Might other critical warning signals be locked by
obstructions that can obscure critical hazards or
information signs in the outside world?

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Component Arrangement
Part of the workplace designers task is to arrange:
The displays and controls
Equipments and tools
Other parts and devices within some physical in space
Depending on the characteristics of the user and the tasks in
question, optimum arrangement can help a user to access and use
these components easily and smoothly

Careless arrangement can confuse the user and make the jobs harder

The general issue is to increase overall movement


efficiency and reduce total movement distance,
whether this is a movement of the hands, of the feet or
of the total body through locomotion

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Principle of display layout may be critical
when applied to components than to displays
since movement of the hands and body reach
those components requires greater effort
than movement of the eyes (for attention) to
see the displays.
The component include displays, controls,
equipment and tools, parts and supplies and
any device that a worker needs to accomplish
his/her tasks.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Principle of component
arrangement
1. Frequency of use principle
The most frequently used components
should be places in most convenient
locations
Frequently displays should be positioned
in the primary viewing area
Frequently used hand tools should be
close to the dominant hands
Frequently used foot pedals should be
close to the right foot

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
2. Importance principle
Those components that are more crucial to the
achievement of the system goals should be located in
the convenient locations.
Depending on their levels of importance for a specific
application, displays and controls can be prioritized as
primary viewing area, which is he space in front of an
operator and 10 to 15 within the normal line of sight.
Secondary displays can be located at the more
peripheral locations
One suggested method of arranging controls
according to their priority

Preferred vertical
surface areas for
different classes of
control devices

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
3. Sequence of use principle
Components used in sequence should be
located next to each other, and their layout
should reflect the sequence of operation.
If an electronic assembly worker is
expected to install an electronic part on a
device immediately after picking the part
up from a parts bin, then the parts bin
should be close to the device is possible.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
4. Consistency principle
Components should be laid out with the same
component located in the same spatial locations
to minimize memory and search requirements.
Consistency should be maintained both within the
same workplace and across workplaces designed
for similar functions.
Example:
A person would find it much easier to find a copy machine in a university library
if copy machines are located at similar locations (e.g.; by the elevator) in all the
libraries on a campus

Standardizations plays important role in ensuring


that consistency can be maintained across the
borders of institutions, companies and countries.
Because arrangements of automobile components
are rather standardized within the US, we can
drive cars made by different companies without
much problem.
EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
5. Control-display compatibility principle of colocation
This is a specific form of stimulus-response
compatibility
In the arrangement context, this principle states that
control devices should be close to their associated
displays.
In the case of multiple controls and displays, the
layout controls should reflect the layout of displays
top make visible the control-display relationship
6. Clutter-avoidance principle
Clutter avoidance is equally important in the
arrangement of controls.
Adequate space must be provided between adjacent
control such as buttons, knobs and pedal to minimize
the risk of accidental activation

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
7. Functional grouping principle
Component with closely related functions should be
placed close to each other.
Example:
Displays and controls associated with power supply should be
group together, whereas those responsible for communications
should be close to each other.

Various groups of related components should be


easily and clearly identifiable.
Colours, shapes, sizes and separation borders are
some of the means to distinguish the groups.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Ideally, we would like to see all seven principles satisfied in a
design solution. Unfortunately, it is often the case that some of
the principles are in conflict with each other and thus cannot
be satisfied at the same time.
For example, a warning display may be most important for the safe
operation of a system, but it may not be the component that is most
frequently used.

Similarly, a frequently used device is not necessarily the most crucial


component.

Such situations call for careful trade off analysis to decide the
relative importance of each principle in the particular situation.
Some data suggests that functional grouping and sequence of
use principles are more critical than the importance principle
in positioning controls and displays (Fowler et. al., 1968;
Wickens et. al.,1997)
EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Application of these principles require
subjective judgments.
Example:
Expert judgments are needed to evaluate the relative importance of
each component and to group various components into functionally
related groups.
However, quantitative methods such as link analysis and optimization
techniques are available that can be used in conjunction with these
subjective approaches.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Link analysis is a quantitative and objective method for examining
the relationships between components, which can be used as the
database for optimizing component arrangements.
A link between a pair of components represents a relationship
between the components.
The strength of the relationship is reflected by link values

Example:
A link value of three for the A-B link (connecting A to B0 means that
component B has been used three times immediately following (or
preceding) the use of A. This is called a sequential link.

It maybe applied to movement of the eyes across displays in visual


scanning, of the hands in a manual task, or the whole body within a
workspace.
Clearly, data about sequential links are useful for the application of
sequence of use principle in workplace design.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Link analysis also yields a
measure of the number of Before
times that each component reposition of
component
is used per unit of time. notes that thick
This measure is called lines are LONG
functional links.
If these components-use
data are known for a
particular application, hen After reposition
these values can be used to notes that
thick lines are
apply the frequency of use SHORTER
principle.

To support a design that minimizes the total travel time across all
GOAL
components
To make traveled links the shortest
EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
With simple systems that have a small number of components,
designers may adopt a simple trial-and error procedure in using link
data to arrange components.
Designers can develop a number of design alternatives and see
how the link values change when the arrangements change and
finally adopt the design option that best meet the needs of the
design.
With complex systems that may have many components, however,
designers may use mathematical methods to help them attack the
problem
Example:
Designers may treat component layout as an optimization problem and use
well-developed operations research methods such as linear programming to
arrange the components in a way that optimizes some design criterion.
The design criterion could be defined as some operational cost, which
expressed as mathematical function of variables that define the spatial layout
of the components.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
DESIGN OF STANDING AND
SEATED WORK AREAS

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Posture defined as :
the relative orientation of the parts of
the body in space
- use muscles to counteract any external
forces acting upon the body (gravity)
Ex: when a person leans forward
postural loadings on the hip extensor or
back extensor muscles are proportional
to the horizontal distance between the
hip and lumbo-sacral joints resp. , and
the center of gravity of the upper part
of the body.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Working Posture
posture a person adopts is determine by the
relationship between the dimensions of the
various items in his/her work place

connections physical (seat, w/top) or visual


(location of displays etc) number & nature ,
appropriate? Will det. the extent to which
posture is constrained.

Repetitive motions, acute over-exertion or


combination

Varied working posture is better than a fixed


working posture

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Recommendations for
working height:
manipulative tasks involves moderate
degree of force & precision 50-100 mm
below elbow height
delicate manipulative task (writing) 50-
100mm above elbow height
heavy manipulative tasks (if involve dward
pressure on the work piece) 100-250mm
below elbow height
lifting & handling tasks between knuckle
height & elbow height
for hand-operated controls (ex. Switches,
levers, etc.) between elbow height &
shoulder height

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Working Height

height = posture
If working level is too high shoulders &
upper limbs will be raised fatigue & strain in
the shoulder muscles.
If dward force is required in the task, Ulimbs
in a position of poor mechanical advantage
to provide it.
- Avoid by : working level is lower.
IF working level is too low, the trunk, neck &
head will be inclined forwards with =>
postural stress for the spine and its muscles.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Guidelines
Encourage frequent changes of posture - sit in
a variety of positions
Industrial tasks sit-stand w/station
Avoid forward inclination of the head and trunk
- commonly results from visual tasks, machine
controls or working surfaces that are too low
Avoid causing the UL to be held in a raised
position
- results from working level is too high (seat
that is too low)
- tasks raised position provide arm supports
- cause considerable stress to the shoulder
muscles & tasks that must be performed at
above the level of the heart impose an
additional circulatory burden

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Choice between STANDING and
SEATED work areas
In most job environments, worker either stand or sit during work.
Standing workplaces are usually used where the workers need to:
1. Make frequent movements in a a large work area
2. Handle heavy or large objects
3. Exert large forces with their hands
Long duration standing duty is also observed in the service industry
such as the jobs of the airline or hotel reservation clerks and bank
tellers.
Because prolonged standing is a strainful posture that puts
excessive load on the body and may lead to body fluid
accumulation in the legs, worker should not be required to stand for
long time without taking a break.
Use of floor mats and shoes with cushioned soles may also help
increase a standing workers comfort.
EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Whenever possible, a seated workplace should be used for long
term duration jobs, because
1. A seated posture is much easier to maintain
2. Much less of a strain to the body.
3. Allow for better controlled arm movements
4. Provide stronger sense of balance and safety
5. Improves blood circulation
Workplace designers must make sure that leg room (leg and knee
clearance) is provided for the seated worker.
Furthermore, prolonged sitting can be harmful to the lower back.
Seated workplaces should be provided with adjustable chairs and
footrests and workers should be allowed to stand up and walked
around after a period of seated work.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
A sit-stand workplace is sometimes used as a
compromise or tradeoff between the standing and sitting
requirements of a job.
This type of workplace may be used when some of the
job components are best done standing and others are
best done sitting.
Designers must analyze the job components involved
and decide which type of workplace is best for each.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Work surface height
The nature of the task being performed should determine
the correct work surface height for standing or seated
work.
A simple but useful rule of thumb to determine the work
surface height is to design standing working heights at 5
to 10 cm (2-4 in.) below elbow level and to design seated
working heights ant elbow level unless the job requires
precise manipulation or great force application
(Ayoub,1973; Grandjean, 1988; Eastman Kodak
Company, 1986)

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Whether seated or standing, precise
manipulation calls for working heights above
the elbow level; the work surface must be
raised to a level at which the worker can see
clearly without bending his/her back forward.
Great force application or coarse work involving
much movement requires working height lower
than that specified by the rule of thumb but
should not be so low that there is not enough
knee or leg room left under the work surface.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Schematic illustration of this rule of thumb for
determining the surface height for standing work.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
If feasible, working surface height should be
adjustable to suit the workers of varying
sizes.
If it is impossible to do so for financial or
various other practical reasons, then working
heights should be set according to the
anthropometric values of the tallest workers.
Shorter workers should be provided with
something to stand on.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Work Surface Depth
An important conception determine work surface depth is
normal and maximum work areas.
These are as were first proposed by Farley (1955) and
Barnes (1963).

The normal work area in horizontal plane is the area covered by


a sweep of the forearm without extending the upper arm

The maximum work area is the area defined by a sweep of the arm
by extending the arm from the shoulder.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Zones of Convenient Reach
-object maybe reached conveniently
without undue exertion. UL measured
from the shoulder to the fingertip,
sweeps out a series of arcs centered
upon a joint.
Normal Working area
normal working area is smaller
comfortable sweeping movement of the UL
about the shoulder with the elbow flexed to
90% or less.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Normal and maximum working areas (in inches and centimeters)
proposed by Barnes and normal work area proposed by Squires
EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Clearly, normal and maximum work areas must be
considered in determining work surface depth.
Items that must be reached immediately or
frequently should be located within the normal
work area and as closed to the body as possible,
while other items can be located within the
maximum work area.
It may be permissible to have a worker
occasionally lean forward to reach an item outside
the maximum work area, but such reaches should
not occur regularly and frequently.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Work Surface Inclination
Most work surfaces are designed as horizontal surfaces.
However, a number of studies have shown that slightly
slanted surfaces (about 15) should be used for reading.
Eastman and Kamon (1976) and Bridger (1988) found that
slant surfaces improve body posture, involve less trunk
movement, require less bending of the neck, and produce
less worker fatigue and discomfort.
However, for other types of visual tasks such as
extensive writing, a slanted surface may not be the best
choice.
Bendix and Hagberg (1984) found that users preferred
horizontal desks for writing, although the same users
preferred the slanted desks for reading.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Conclusion
Matching the physical layout of the workspace to
the physical dimensions and constraints of the
user is a necessary but not sufficient task to
create a well-human-factored workspace.
As we noted, just because a worker can reach a
component does not mean that he/she can easily
manipulate it or lift it without doing damage to
the lower back.
To address this second dynamic aspect of
workspace design, we must consider the
biomechanics of the human body, the issue to
which we now turn.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Seated work and chair design

Whenever possible, a seated workplace


should be used for long duration jobs because:
a) Seated posture much easier to maintain
b) Less strainful to the body
c) Allow better controlled arm movement
d) Provides stronger sense of balance and safety
e) Improves blood circulation
Disadvantages of sitting posture:
a) Vulnerable to low back problems
Low back pain is common in seated work environment
where no lifting or manual handling activities occur

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Seated work and chair design
Low-back disorder in seated work are largely due to a
loss of lordotic curvature in the spine and a
corresponding increase in disc pressure for sitting
position
The lumbar (low back) spine of an adult human when
standing:
erect curved forward- spinal posture (lordosis)
while thoracic spine curve backward (kyphosis)
When person sit down;
The pelvis rotates backward
The lumbar lordosis is changed into kyphosis
Particularly when person sits with a slumped posture

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Seated work and chair design
Most people
do not
maintain
erect posture
for long but
soon adopt a
slumped
posture

Without proper body support, most people


adopt slumped sitting posture, front part of The slumped sitting position
intervertebral discs is compresses and the produces anterior wedging
back part stretched of the intervertebral disc at
The forces causes to produce protrude the low back, which may
backward, pressurizing spinal soft tissues and pressurize the soft tissues
possibly the nerve root which may result back between the anterior and
posterior of the spine
pain (Bridger, 1995. Keegen, 1953)

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Furthermore, lumbar lordosis is a sitting posture increases the load
within the discs because the trunk load moment increases when the
pelvis rotates backward and the lumbar spine and torso rotate
forward.
A number of studies have shown that disc pressures for upright
standing postures were at least 35-40% lower than those for sitting
(Nachemson & Morris, 1964; Chaffin & Andersson, 1991)
In different unsupported sitting postures the lowest pressure was
found when sitting with the back straight

Disc pressure is much lower in an erect sitting posture than slumped sitting.

Disc pressure varies depending on sitting posture


EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics
Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Seated work and chair design

Design seats is important to reduce the incident rate and


severity of low back pain in seated work.
Properly designed seat can support a person to adopt a
less strainful posture and reduce loads placed on the
spine.
Thus, backrest inclination angle, lumbar support and
armrest are designed.

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf
Back rest
Effective in reducing low back stress.
The most important parameter for backrest design is its inclination
angle (between the seat surface)
90 (straight back) is inappropriate because it forces a person a
person to adopt slumped posture.
An increase in back rest inclination results in an increase in transfer
of body weight to the backrest and reduced disc pressure.
The optimal inclination angle should be between 110 and 120
(Hosea et al., 1986; Andersson et al., 1974)
The backrest should be provided with a pad in the lumbar region
(called lumbar support which can greatly reduce low back stress as
seated person can maintain lordosis.
Lumbar support are particularly important when the back inclination
is small.
The thickness of lumbar support should be about 5cm.
Lumbar support is adjustable in height and size to maximize the
comfort for people of different sizes

EMM5710 Industrial Ergonomics


Assoc.. Prof.Dr.Rosnah Mohd.Yusuf

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