Ensuring an optimal workspace whether it is in the hub, sitting room or company office!

At MDC Physiotherapy we want to help you transform your workspace into a healthier and happier one! Below, we will go through what it is, its meaning and how you can implement it with some easy tips!

Let’s look at how the term of ergonomics came about. Ergonomics is defined in the Collins Dictionary as ‘’the study of how equipment and furniture can be arranged in order that people can do work or other activities more efficiently and comfortably’’.


Ergonomics aims to improve the workspace environment in order to prevent injury or harm to the employee. It brings human abilities and limitations into the design of the workspace as it accommodates for example, their size, vision, hearing and even attitudes.

The word ergonomics comes from the Greek word “ergon” which means work and “nomos” which means laws. It’s essentially the “laws of work” or “science of work”. Good ergonomic design removes incompatibilities between the work and the worker creating the optimal work environment.

Tip 1: Check your workstation 

If you’re currently working from the couch or dining room table of your home, you’re probably not getting the appropriate support for a good postural position. And if you do have a dedicated setup at home or in the office, you maybe still be putting unnecessary pressure and strain on your back and neck with a structure that isn’t suited to your body. To relieve strain and prevent injury, use this head-to-toe reference when considering your body placement at your desk area and overall workstation setup.


Tip 2: Movement Snacks

Sitting for long periods of time can lead to muscle and joint stiffness in your neck and back. With time this can then progress, causing you to develop pain and discomfort. Research shows that frequent stretching not only prevents discomfort, but it can also improve employee quality of life (Holzgreve et al., 2020).

To promote healthy circulation throughout your workday and keep your body moving, try implementing these three tips:

  • Move every 60. Break up sitting time by getting up and moving for one to five minutes every hour and periodically working from a standing position using a standing desk or high counter.

  • Stretch it out. During these quick breaks, try a variety of stretches that target your neck, back, shoulders, legs and knees. You can even do these stretches right at your desk.

  • Use digital tools. StretchMinder for iPhone users, Stretching & Eye Exercises for Android users and the Stretch Reminder Google Chrome extension for Chrome users not only remind you to get up, they also share exercises and activity suggestions for healthy movement.

Tip 3: Commit to regular exercise  

For healthy adults (18-64), that means completing at least 30 minutes a day of moderate activity on 5 days a week or 150 minutes a week. Regular exercise, especially the kind that involves strengthening the muscles in your neck, shoulders and back, is essential for reducing/preventing neck and back pain. Incorporating a combination of these workouts into your routine can be completed by using dumbbells, resistance bands or  body weight.

Education is key!

At MDC Physiotherapy we provide personal consultations to help you create a safer and more comfortable working space. Along with providing education on the above tips, we can treat the musculoskeletal issues that you have which may be arising from your workplace set up!

So why not book an appointment via the website or call us on 045 530 007 to find out more!


  1. Ergonomics definition and meaning: Collins english dictionary. Ergonomics definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary. HarperCollins Publishers Ltd. Available at: (Accessed: December 12, 2022).
  2. Holzgreve, F. et al. (2020) “The office work and Stretch Training (OST) study: An individualized and standardized approach to improve the quality of life in office workers,” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17(12), p. 4522. Available at:
  3. Be well (2020) Search for services or information. Available at: (Accessed: December 12, 2022).


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