An ergonomics survey of 84 employees who moved to an alternative workspace with smaller workstations equipped with various ergonomic products is reported. Half of the employees received some ergonomics training. Results showed that 25-40% reported the ergonomic products were somewhat or much less comfortable to use, and around the same proportion found them somewhat or much more comfortable to use. Between 25-40% of employees reported frequent neck, shoulder, back and right wrist discomfort and many reported that these symptoms interfered with work activities. There was clear evidence that levels of discomfort increased over the course of the work day. Employees were equally split on whether the office changes helped or hindered their work productivity. Comparison of the trained versus untrained employees showed that training reduced the problems associated with their new workstations. Overall, the results suggest that ergonomic products alone may not compensate for problems associated with smaller workstations.


ergonomics training alternative workspaces musculoskeletal injuries keyboard tray ergonomic chair productivity 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Brisson, C., Montreuil, S., Punnett, L.: Effects of an ergonomic training program on workers with video display units. Scand. J. Work Environ. Health 25, 255–263 (1999)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Ketola, R., Toivonen, R., Häkkänen, M., Luukkonen, R., Takala, E.-P., Viikari-Juntura, E.: Effects of ergonomic intervention in work with video display units. Scand. J. Work Environ. Health 28, 18–24 (2002)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Korunka, C., Dudak, E., Molnar, M., Hoonakker, P.: Predictors of a successful implementation of an ergonomic training program. App. Erg. 42, 98–105 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Martimo, K.-P., Shiri, R., Miranda, H., Ketola, R., Varonen, H., Viikari-Juntura, E.L.: Effectiveness of an ergonomic intervention on the productivity of workers with upper-extremity disorders – a randomized controlled trial. Scand. J. Work Environ. Health 36, 25–33 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Robertson, M., Amick III, B.C., DeRango, K., Rooney, T., Bazzani, L., Harrist, R., Moore, A.: The Effects of an Office Ergonomics Training and Chair Intervention on Worker Knowledge, Behavior and Musculoskeletal Risk. App. Erg. 40, 124–135 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Solidaki, E., Chatzi, L., Bitsios, P., Markatzi, I., Plana, E., Castro, F., Palmer, K.T., Coggon, D., Kogevinas, M.: Work-related and psychological determinants of multisite musculoskeletal pain. Scand. J. Work Environ. Health 36, 54–61 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alan Hedge
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Design and Environmental Analysis, College of Human EcologyCornell UniversityIthacaUSA

Personalised recommendations