Ergonomics

Work smarter, Not harder

Work shouldn't hurt

Ergonomics is about understanding one's physical abilities and limitations in their work environment. But ergonomics is more than just comfortable chairs. It also includes human factors such as working hours, mental workload, and workplace culture and communication. If gone unrecognized, poor ergonomics can lead to musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) or repetitive strain injuries (RSIs).

MSDs or RSIs are injuries and disorders of the musculoskeletal system, which includes the muscles, tendons, and nerves. MSDs occur in the workplace when the demands of the job exceed the capabilities of the worker.

There are many things companies and employees can do to recognize and reduce the hazards of MSDs. As a starting point, consider getting advice from a qualified ergonomist. They can help prioritize your needs, isolate specific hazards and offer solutions to ensure your staff are working smarter, not harder. After all, Work Shouldn't Hurt.

For MSD resources from our system partner, visit MOL's GEM section.

 

 

Global Ergonomics Month: Move More, Move Often

Do you 20-8-2?

MSD Tips & Facts

Ergonomics

 
 
 

 

Technical Consultants

WSPS ergonomic specialists work with you and your staff to identify the most effective ways to improve your employees' work environments and implement ergonomic solutions.

Sandra Patterson
Technical Consultant, Ergonomics
View bio




 

Downloads

Ergonomic Handbook for the Clothing Industry

Ergonomic Handbook for the Clothing Industry

Published by the Union of Needletrades, Industrial Textile Employees, the Institute for Work & Health, and the Occupational Health Clinics for Ontario Workers, Inc.

This book looks at conditions in the clothing industry to find out how wrist, shoulder, neck and back injuries can be prevented.
1497 KB pdf
MSD Hazards Checklist

MSD Hazards Checklist

A checklist to assess the ergonomic risks of each job task.
317 KB pdf
MSD Risk Assessment

MSD Risk Assessment

This document will help you determine if there is a high risk of injury once the potential risk of a musculoskeletal disorder has been identified.
483 KB pdf
Office Workstation Design

Office Workstation Design

This document outlines how workstation layout, lighting and task design can affect the physical and visual demands on people who work with computers.
255 KB pdf
OHSCO MSD Prevention Guideline for Ontario (English)

OHSCO MSD Prevention Guideline for Ontario (English)

The guideline, resource manual and toolboxes were developed in partnership with the members of OHSCO, which is comprised of the Ministry of Labour, the WSIB, the Institute for Work and Health and the health and safety associations.  The Centre of Research Expertise for the Prevention of Musculoskeletal Disorders (CRE-MSD) also assisted in its development.

This guideline describes a recommended framework for MSD prevention.
771 KB pdf
OHSCO MSD Prevention Guideline for Ontario (French)

OHSCO MSD Prevention Guideline for Ontario (French)

The guideline, resource manual and toolboxes were developed in partnership with the members of OHSCO, which is comprised of the Ministry of Labour, the WSIB, the Institute for Work and Health and the health and safety associations.  The Centre of Research Expertise for the Prevention of Musculoskeletal Disorders (CRE-MSD) also assisted in the development.
663 KB pdf
OHSCO MSD Prevention Toolbox A (English)

OHSCO MSD Prevention Toolbox A (English)

The MSD Prevention toolbox provides basic and simple-to-use tools and worksheets to help with your MSD prevention program.  The toolbox is broken into three parts; this is part A.
1789 KB pdf
OHSCO MSD Prevention Toolbox A (French)

OHSCO MSD Prevention Toolbox A (French)

The MSD Prevention Toolbox provides basic and simple-to-use tools and worksheets to ehlp with your MSD prevention program.  The Toolbox is broken into three parts.  This is part A.
1824 KB pdf
OHSCO MSD Prevention Toolbox B (English)

OHSCO MSD Prevention Toolbox B (English)

The primary purpose of Toolbox B is to provide workplace parties with additional information and tools that they can use to enhance their current MSD prevention process and, if required, move beyond a simple MSD risk assessment.  In this toolbox you will find a tool to help you review your MSD prevention process, information on calculating the costs of MSDs, a sample MSD prevention policy / procedure, additional MSD hazard recognition tools, an MSD risk assessment checklist, and a tool to help you communicate the results of an MSD prevention project.
475 KB pdf
OHSCO MSD Prevention Toolbox B (French)

OHSCO MSD Prevention Toolbox B (French)

The primary purpose of Toolbox B is to provide workplace parties with additional information and tools that they can use to enhance their current MSD prevention process and, if required, move beyond a simple MSD risk assessment.  In this toolbox you will find a tool to help you review your MSD prevention process, information on calculating the costs of MSDs, a sample MSD prevention policy / procedure, additional MSD hazard recognition tools, an MSD risk assessment checklist, and a tool to help you communicate the results of an MSD prevention project.
497 KB pdf
OHSCO MSD Prevention Toolbox C (English)

OHSCO MSD Prevention Toolbox C (English)

The primary purpose of Toolbox C is to provide workplace parties with additional information on in-depth MSD risk assessment methods. The risk assessment methods described in this toolbox may be helpful if the simple risk assessment method as described in the MSD Resource Manual has not identified with MSD hazards are of concern or how exposure can be controlled.
324 KB pdf
OHSCO MSD Prevention Toolbox C (French)

OHSCO MSD Prevention Toolbox C (French)

The primary purpose of Toolbox C is to provide workplace parties with additional information on in-depth MSD risk assessment methods.  The risk assessment methods described in this toolbox may be helpful if the simple risk assessment method as described in the MSD Resource Manual has not identified with MSD hazards are of concern or how exposure can be controlled.
381 KB pdf
OHSCO Resource Manual for the MSD Prevention Guideline for Ontario (English)

OHSCO Resource Manual for the MSD Prevention Guideline for Ontario (English)

This manual contains information on implementing the process described in the guideline, understanding and recognizing MSD hazards, assessing risk and controlling hazards.
1571 KB pdf
OHSCO Resource Manual for the MSD Prevention Guideline for Ontario (French)

OHSCO Resource Manual for the MSD Prevention Guideline for Ontario (French)

This manual contains information on implementing the process described in the guideline, understanding and recognizing MSD hazards, assessing risk and controlling hazards.
1394 KB pdf
Physical Demands Analysis (Fillable Form)

Physical Demands Analysis (Fillable Form)

A physical demands analysis (PDA) is a systematic procedure to quantify and evaluate the physical, cognitive, and environmental demands of the essential and non-essential tasks of a job.

See "Physical Demands Analysis Instruction" for assistance to complete this form.

731 KB pdf
Physical Demands Analysis (Instruction)

Physical Demands Analysis (Instruction)

This is an instruction to help you with completing the "Physical Demands Analysis (Fillable Form)".

733 KB pdf
Preventing Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs)

Preventing Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs)

This guideline will help you understand symptoms, risk factors, and common myths as well as offering some practical information on prevention strategies.
256 KB pdf
Safety Check: Dish Washing Safety

Safety Check: Dish Washing Safety

Dish washing safety tips for workers.
488 KB PDF
Safety Check: Office Workstation Safety

Safety Check: Office Workstation Safety

Office workstation safety tips for workers.
471 KB PDF
Safety Check: Pallet Jack Safety

Safety Check: Pallet Jack Safety

Pallet jack safety tips for workers.
506 KB PDF
Work, Warm-Up, Stretch and Flexibility Program

Work, Warm-Up, Stretch and Flexibility Program

This stretching and flexibility program includes a guide to implementing the program in your workplace; posters illustrating and describing how to properly perform warm-up exercises before starting work as well as stress releasers that can be done during work; an employee handout illustrating and describing how to properly perform flexibility stretches at home.

888 KB ZIP
Working as a Sales Representative

Working as a Sales Representative

Working as a sales representative can be a demanding and hectic position, where the risk of musculoskeletal injuries is increased.
219 KB 

Consulting Services

WSPS Safety Group

WSPS Safety Group

WSPS is the largest Safety Group provider and one of the longest running sponsors in the province. With our extensive experience and proven track record, by working with us and other member firms participating firms can achieve better results, and qualify for WSIB rebates.

Training

Building an MSD Prevention Program (Four 1/2 day modules)

Building an MSD Prevention Program (Four 1/2 day modules)

NEW! This course is designed for a group of individuals (employees and management) interested in working together to apply ergonomics principles in the workplace for the purpose of improving working conditions while controlling MSD hazards.

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Call for pricing

Conducting Office Ergonomic Assessments (1 day)

Conducting Office Ergonomic Assessments (1 day)

This comprehensive workshop includes proven methodology and practical hands-on training. Currently available for on-site location delivery.
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$249.00

Conducting Office Ergonomic Assessments (Federal) - English

Conducting Office Ergonomic Assessments (Federal) - English

NEW! This course provides federally regulated workplaces with proven methodology to identify the root causes of office musculoskeletal disorders (MSD) and conduct workstation assessments.

View Details 
$209.00

Conducting Office Ergonomic Assessments (Federal) - French

Conducting Office Ergonomic Assessments (Federal) - French

NEW! This course provides federally regulated workplaces with proven methodology to identify the root causes of office musculoskeletal disorders (MSD) and conduct workstation assessments.

View Details 
$209.00

Nuts and Bolts of Implementing an MSD Prevention Program (1 day)

Nuts and Bolts of Implementing an MSD Prevention Program (1 day)

Learn how to implement an MSD prevention program and assess and control MSD hazards.
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$249.00

E-Courses

(ON) Office Ergonomics in Ontario (1 hour)

(ON) Office Ergonomics in Ontario (1 hour)

Find solutions to ergonomic issues for your Ontario workplace.
View Details 
$49.00

Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs): Awareness

Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs): Awareness

Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are a potential risk for all sectors and occupations. They can cause discomfort, fatigue, pain, injury, and illness to workers. In fact, work-related musculoskeletal injuries are the most frequent type of lost-time injury and are the largest source of lost-time worker compensation costs in Canada.
View Details 
$0.00

Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs): Prevention (English) (1 hour)

Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs): Prevention (English) (1 hour)

This course focuses on good ergonomics principles and work organization as key prevention measures.
View Details 
$64.00

Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs): Prevention (French) (1 hour)

Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs): Prevention (French) (1 hour)

This course focuses on good ergonomics principles and work organization as key prevention measures.
View Details 
$64.00

Office Ergonomics (English) (1 hour)

Office Ergonomics (English) (1 hour)

The goal of the course is to provide you with the knowledge to help find solutions to ergonomic issues in your workplace.
View Details 
$49.00

Office Ergonomics (French) (1 hour)

Office Ergonomics (French) (1 hour)

The goal of the course is to provide you with the knowledge to help find solutions to ergonomic issues in your workplace.
View Details 
$49.00

Articles

New tool helps employees move more

New tool helps employees move more

It's Global Ergonomics Month, the perfect time to take action against sedentary lifestyles that could be making your employees sick and costing you money. And WSPS can help you do it.
Oct 12, 2017
Stop forceful gripping, pinching MSDs

Stop forceful gripping, pinching MSDs

A research project involving 4,300 workers at more than 50 workplaces has found that people who often use a forceful gripping and pinching motion could face a higher risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome.*
Aug 10, 2017
6 low-tech, low-cost ergo solutions for small business

6 low-tech, low-cost ergo solutions for small business

"When it comes to addressing ergonomic issues," says WSPS ergonomist Mike Lanigan, "small business employers tell me they face three big challenges: cost, time, and resources. 'This is why I can't do it,' they say. "These are very real challenges for businesses of any size," continues Mike, "but low-tech, low-cost solutions exist."

Oct 06, 2016
12 ways you can make Global Ergonomics Month a game-changer

12 ways you can make Global Ergonomics Month a game-changer

October is Global Ergonomics Month - a perfect time to introduce changes in your workplace that reduce the risk of musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and improve productivity, says WSPS ergonomist Sandra Patterson. "MSDs consistently remain the single biggest cause of lost workdays, and they occur in every industry sector and age group. Make big gains against these injuries by launching your own campaign during Global Ergonomics Month."

Sep 08, 2016
BlackBerry thumb, iPod finger, text neck: these repetitive strain injuries are no joke

BlackBerry thumb, iPod finger, text neck: these repetitive strain injuries are no joke

Don't be misled by the flippant labels. Repetitive strain injuries from overusing handheld electronic devices are just the latest in a long list of equipment- and task-related injuries that can cause painful and sometimes permanent damage to our musculoskeletal system, undermining our well-being and productivity. What's new is how these hazards are creeping from our work lives into our personal lives.

Feb 25, 2015