In 1996, OSHA initiated an ergonomics-focused strategy to reduce work-related musculoskeletal disorders. A cornerstone of this strategy was awarding grants for ergonomic training programs.
By 2000, OSHA distributed $3 million across 25 grants. One notable recipient was Mercy Hospital in Des Moines, Iowa. Targeting an industry prone to such disorders, Mercy trained over 3,000 workers in ergonomic lifting, drastically reducing lost work days. This success story underscores the broader trend: regular ergonomic training effectively lowers injury rates.
Office ergonomics training is so helpful for preventing musculoskeletal injuries, but it requires ongoing training to be most successful.
How Often Should You Offer Office Ergonomics Training?
While no official legislature determines how often you should offer office ergonomics training, the best answer is that it depends on your business.
Employers should provide ergonomic training to new hires in risk-prone roles and whenever there are changes in work tasks or equipment. Regular refresher sessions, like yearly or quarterly, enhance employee understanding and make the ergonomics program more impactful.
While there’s no one-size-fits-all answer, ongoing office ergonomics training should frequently remind employees to use their newfound knowledge in their day-to-day work, as it's easy to fall back into old habits.
What Should Office Ergonomics Training Include?
OSHA suggests that practical office ergonomics training should include the following seven learning objectives:
- The ergonomic principle basics including grip types, force requirements, neutral postures, repetitive lifting and fatigue failure.
- Proper lifting techniques and safety in the workplace best practices.
- How to recognize risk factors when they appear during workplace activities.
- How to choose and use the best ergonomic tools and equipment.
- The early symptoms of musculoskeletal disorders.
- How to be proactive in responding to early symptoms and how to prevent further or more severe injury.
- How to report injuries.
Additional Resources for Office Ergonomics Training
The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety has some informative and easy-to-read fact sheets available on its website.
About AIP’s Office Ergonomics Training Course
AIP Safety’s Office Ergonomics Training course provides comprehensive workplace ergonomics training, grounding its teachings in the Occupational Health and Safety Guidelines context.
As industry statistics consistently highlight the financial and health costs of overuse and “wear and tear” injuries, our 4-hour curriculum is a critical tool for businesses. Participants will dive deep into physical, cognitive, and organizational ergonomics, emphasizing the multi-faceted nature of workplace wellness.
From an in-depth analysis of risk factors and injury prevention to practical skills such as optimal desk design and effective lifting techniques, participants are equipped to foster safer and more efficient work environments. Incorporating lost time claims statistics and a comprehensive overview of pertinent regulations and guidelines further solidifies the course’s relevance and necessity in today’s industry landscape.