Lawyers And Ergonomics
In the last few decades, the practice of law has substantially changed. Computers and related technology, specifically the mobile phone, have become a vital part of the 21st-century law practice. The result is that most lawyers spend an abundant amount of time using their computers and mobile devices. While these devices are convenient and time-saving, thus improving the efficiency of the modern law practice and reducing costs, which increases profits, there are drawbacks in the ergonomic issues that are caused by constantly staring at a computer, tablet, or phone. The modern 21st Century lawyer must have a comfortable workspace and utilize state-of-the-art tools to reduce the stress and strain of using modern technological devices.
The first part of the process is ensuring that regular interactions with the computer and other technologies are suited to comfort and, therefore, ergonomics. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety & Health Administration defines ergonomics as “fitting a job to a person,” and may help “lessen muscle fatigue, increase productivity and reduce the number and severity of work-related MSDs [musculoskeletal disorders].”
The following are some tips:
*A proper work station is the starting point for any attorney to ensure the optimization of ergonomics in the modern law office. OSHA advises checking for proper lighting and ventilation, as well as checking equipment for correct placement within such space. After setting up the workspace, a lawyer should take a test run to ensure that he or she maintains good posture and is not experiencing any unnecessary stress and strain on the eyes, neck, shoulders, wrists, and back.
*A pen tablet replaces the computer’s mouse and/or a laptop’s trackpad, thus easing stress on the hands and wrists. A pen tablet is easy to use and a great way to reduce pain and other physical strain.
*A laptop stand raises a laptop to eye level, reducing both neck and eye strain. Also, most stands are easily transportable and are proven to effectively reduce neck pain and eye strain.
*A standing desk can replace and eliminate the health risks of being confined to constantly sitting in a chair. Standing desks are available in a variety of styles and price points. Any lawyer should be able to find one that meets his or her needs and personal preference.
*A well-made, comfortable chair is essential for all those instances when a lawyer sits. A good chair may make the difference between a productive day and aches and pains that impede a lawyer from efficiently completing work. While ergonomic chairs may be expensive, they may be a worthwhile investment considering the amount of time that an attorney will spend sitting in them.
*Exercising while sitting at a desk may provide valuable relief, especially if a job requires sitting at a desk for many hours throughout the workday. Not only does it provide physical relief, but mental relief as well.
Consulting with an ergonomics professional is one alternative to making the workplace more comfortable for employees. This should decrease workplace injuries and even increase productivity. Another option is walking for a few minutes regularly during the workday to improve blood flow and decrease any physical ailments related to sitting for long periods.
As 2021 begins, the CDTA continues to place students in the best position possible to obtain the valuable benefits, now more important than ever, that distance learning provides, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. The California Desert Trial Academy College of Law provides a state-of-the-art online learning platform that takes full advantage of the benefits provided by distance learning. The CDTA is truly moving forward in 2021! The CDTA College of Law trains, educates, and develops students to be exceptional attorneys and trial advocates. Call us today at (760) 342-0900 or find out more online here.