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What is Ergonomics and Why is it Important?

Ergonomics is a branch of science which has its roots in physics, biology, psychology, physiology and also in interior decoration, furniture design and aesthetics. Ergonomic training or human factors can be named as the designing of equipment and devices that work towards the optimum comfort and good health of human beings. The science of ergonomics focuses on understanding the various interactions between humans and the physical elements of their environment. The goal here is to provide an optimum environment for human=system performance.

The roots of Ergonomics

Ergonomics is not a new science as its roots began in ancient Greece. Hippocrates used ergonomic training methods to design the work cells of surgeons in Greece. According to Archeology, Egyptians too followed ergonomic principles while making their household tools and home equipment.

19th century saw Fredrick Taylor who propagated the now famous time and motion study and also the scientific management principles. The World wars saw the application of ergonomics training and designing in making war craft.

Since then Human factors and ergonomic training have been successfully used in aging management, healthcare, interior design, furniture design, IT, product manufacture, aerospace, training in virtual and real time environments etc.

The major applications of ergonomics

Physical ergonomics training has become a vital part of the medical world. Patients who are suffering from Carpal Tunnel syndrome and arthritis can be helped to manage their pain and disease symptoms through ergonomically designed devices. These devices are used to control the symptoms manifested by pressure related acute pain.