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The arts and science of ergonomics

Ergonomic design makes you both comfortable and productive. Designing for the human experience needs art and science. Without it, furniture is a collection of wooden pieces. It is ergonomics that turns that furniture into a comfortable, usable and pleasant experience. A bad posture with a sedentary lifestyle is sure to result in back pain and numerous other health issues. It is always better to create a living space that is safe and healthy and ergonomics helps do just that. Here are some examples of ergonomics at work.

Why are bar stools so high?

Ever wondered why bar stools are so tall? Yes, they are a blessing if you have had one too many glasses of wine. However, they were designed to be that tall so that you can stand and sit, and yet be on the same level with another person at the bar. It gives the comfort of sitting and the agility to stand up quickly if someone approaches you. Ergonomics creates the understanding needed to see how humans would interact in a bar.

Why do restaurants have low tables?

Ever noticed that, in a restaurant, you can easily rest your elbows on the table? If you cannot perch them up, then the furniture design of the table is not ergonomic. The table should be of appropriate height, so when a person sits on the chair, his elbows are conveniently placed on the table, and he can comfortably use the fork and spoon to savour his meal!

How squishy should your sofa be?

Your sofa should be firm and not as squishy that sinking into it feels like drowning in quicksand. Too much softness is harsh on the back, as the back loses its natural posture and takes the shape of the sofa. This will affect your posture in the long run, though you feel very comfortable initially. Body position matters in other ways too. You should be able to sit in an upright position with your back straight and your feet rested on the floor and your knees bent at a 90-degrees angle. It is always good to think about these principles before selecting your furniture decor.

The height of a bed will decide how well you sleep

Your bedroom furniture design should be cosy and welcoming after a hectic day at work. Your bed should have just the right height so that you could easily sit on it first, and then lie down. If it is too low, it will be difficult to sit on it comfortably. And if it is too high it will be difficult to climb on it. Ideally, when you sit on the bed, your knees should be in line with your hips and your feet flat on the ground. If this happens then the height of the bed is perfect for you. So, next time you go bed shopping, keep these things in mind and you will never wake up grumpy.

Why is working on a computer desk is better than working on a bed or sofa?

Your workstation is your life! This is where you spend most of the day sitting hunched over a table, typing away till your nails fall off (not literally of course). You need to ensure that your furniture design is aligned to your comfort. Sometimes if you bring work home, you tend to work while sitting on the sofa or worse, lying on the bed. Such incorrect postures can lead to pains, and even injuries. A good computer table and office chair ensures your posture is right. Your chair should have a tight backrest which will keep your back and neck straight. Your forearms should be placed parallel on the desk. Your feet should be flat on the ground. The computer screen should be raised to a comfortable eye level. If you get these ergonomic principles wrong, you are in for lifelong muscle aches and injuries.

Designer furniture can be comfortable and chic! A good posture while sitting and sleeping is essential to lead a healthy life. With ergonomic thinking in place, your life will be safe, fun and efficient too.

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