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Holistic Health Factors in theWorkplaceBiophilia, Ergonomics and Exercise
Image on cover & facing page derived from: Steelcase. (n.d.). The movement toward wellness in the workplace. Retrieved Apr...
Holistic Health Factors in theWorkplaceBiophilia, Ergonomics and ExerciseApril P. McEwan
Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace     Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exercise                      by              April...
Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and ExerciseAbstract    In an attempt to advocate body-   ...
ContentsChapter                                                                                                           ...
FiguresFigure                                                                                                             ...
FiguresFigure                                                                                                             ...
Introduction               Word cloud of words used               to describe Galen Cranz’s                      ideal wor...
Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and ExerciseIntroduction                                  ...
Introductionbodies, or energize themselves at work.       natural environment and other species         After reading Cran...
Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and ExerciseProblem Statement                             ...
Problem StatementIntroductiontaking work with them on mobile               (Clements-Croome, 2006).                      m...
Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and ExerciseAssumption                                    ...
Significance                             If we do not provide comfortable environments that fulfill base human needs (emot...
Introduction                                                                    Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: ...
Scope                              “Past research has identified many factors, such as demographic, task-related, workstat...
Introduction                                                                   Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: B...
Review of Literature                                                            Introduction    Numerous literature on top...
Introduction                                                                  Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Bi...
Review of Literature: Holistic Health                                                 Word cloud of words                 ...
Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exercise                                              ...
Review of Literature: Holistic Health                                                 Word cloud of words                 ...
Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exercise(p. 803). Goleman states that “emotions      i...
Review of Literature: Holistic Health                                                 Word cloud of words                 ...
Introduction                                                                Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biop...
Review of Literature: Biophilia                                                               Biophilia      Evolutionary ...
Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exercisecan impact on the human mind”                 ...
Review of Literature: BiophiliaIntroductionfactory for Herman Miller that brought       not the object of focus (Grinde & ...
Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exercise                                              ...
Review of Literature: Ergonomicsraising desk heights from thirty to forty      ideal situation would allow individuals toi...
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
Mc ewan thesis book individual pages
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  1. 1. Holistic Health Factors in theWorkplaceBiophilia, Ergonomics and Exercise
  2. 2. Image on cover & facing page derived from: Steelcase. (n.d.). The movement toward wellness in the workplace. Retrieved April 20, 2011, from www.steelcase.com/ergonomics
  3. 3. Holistic Health Factors in theWorkplaceBiophilia, Ergonomics and ExerciseApril P. McEwan
  4. 4. Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exercise by April P. McEwanAll content has been derived from the original Thesis presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Master of Science in Design Approved April 2011 by the Graduate Supervisory Committee: Philip White, Chair Rebecca Barry James Shraiky ARIZONA STATE UNIVERSITY May 2011
  5. 5. Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and ExerciseAbstract In an attempt to advocate body- with qualitative and flexible research average miles walked by participantsconscious design and healing work approaches using observation, survey, in each workplace as well as existingenvironments, this research study interview and pedometer readings as incentives and descriptions of ideal workof holistic health in the workplace methods for data collection. Two small environments.explores cognitive, social and physical corporate franchise financial institutions Implications of this research study involvewell-being in four small US offices that and two small private healthcare interior design, industrial design andare between 1000 and 4000 square providers from both Arizona and Georgia fashion design that can accommodatefeet and employ three to twelve participated in this study. Each office the desires of the four participatingemployees. Holistic health, as pursued volunteered one employer and two workplaces. Major design implicationsin this research, includes social health, employee participants. involve accommodating these particularemotional health and physical health. Of the holistic health factors considered workplaces to provide personnel withThese three factors of holistic health in these four case studies, this study opportunities for holistic health in workinghave been identified and investigated found that a majority of participants environments. More specific implicationsin this study: biophilia: peoples’ love and equally valued emotional health, social of office related design involve providingaffiliation with other species and the health and physical health. A majority access to natural environments, body-natural environment; ergonomics: the of participants declared a preference conscious equipment and spaces, asrelationship between the human body, for workplace environments with serene well as opportunities for exercise andmovement, the immediate environment natural environments with outdoor social interaction. These elementsand productivity; and exercise: exertion spaces and interaction with other of the factors biophilia, ergonomicsof the body to obtain physical fitness. species, work environments with body- and exercise were found to be saidThis research study proposes that conscious furniture, equipment and to contribute to cognitive, social andemployees and employers of these four workstations, as well as exercise space physical health.participating workplaces desire mobility and equipment. As these particularand resources in the workplace that workplace environments affirmed valuesupport holistic health practices involving for elements of the factors biophilia,biophilia, ergonomics, and exercise. ergonomics and exercise, all threeLiterature review of holistic health and factors are considered valueable withinthe holistic health factors of this research the workplaces of these case studies.topic support the idea that interaction Furthermore, factors that were said towith other species can be healing, contribute to personal productivity inergonomic body-conscious furniture and participating workplaces were foundequipment increase productivity, limit as well as sacrifices that participantsbody aches, pains and health costs; and stated they would be willing to makeexercise stimulates the mind and body, in order to implement their preferredincreasing productivity. work environment(s). In addition,This study has been conducted primarily this study recorded and calculated iii
  6. 6. ContentsChapter PageIntroduction ............................................................................................................................... 2Problem Statement .................................................................................................................. 4Assumption ................................................................................................................................ 6Significance ............................................................................................................................... 7Scope ......................................................................................................................................... 9Review of Literature .................................................................................................................. 12 Holistic Health ............................................................................................................... 14 Biophilia ......................................................................................................................... 19 Ergonomics ................................................................................................................... 22 The Chair ....................................................................................................................... 24 Exercise ......................................................................................................................... 26 Environmental Psychology ......................................................................................... 29 Health and Healing Environments ............................................................................. 30Findings and Opportunities ...................................................................................................... 32Methodology ............................................................................................................................ 34Primary Research Findings ....................................................................................................... 37Discussion and Conclusion ...................................................................................................... 40References ................................................................................................................................ 49
  7. 7. FiguresFigure PageWord cloud of words used to describe Galen Cranz’s ideal workspace .......................... 2“Something, somewhere went terribly wrong” .................................................................... 4Steelcase image from Movement Toward Health in the Workplace booklet .................. 5Steelcase image from Movement Toward Health in the Workplace booklet .................. 6Elderly man and dog in park photo by April P. McEwan .................................................... 7Conceptual framework ........................................................................................................... 9Elements of factors of conceptual framework ..................................................................... 10Word cloud describing emotional health ............................................................................. 13Word cloud describing social health ..................................................................................... 15Steelcase social health image ............................................................................................... 16Word cloud describing physical health ................................................................................. 17Photo of Bougainvillea by April P. McEwan .......................................................................... 20Photo of tree spirit on Saint Simons Island by April P. McEwan ........................................... 21Varier® Gravity chair designed by Peter Opsvik .................................................................. 24Le Corbusier’s lounge chair ..................................................................................................... 24Varier® Variable ™ Balans ®, designed by Peter Opsvik .................................................... 24Steelcase physical health image ........................................................................................... 26Steelcase Walkstation by Details ............................................................................................ 27Rainbow rainforest hoto by April P. McEwan ........................................................................ 30Portland photo by April P. McEwan ....................................................................................... 32 v
  8. 8. FiguresFigure PageResearch Methodology mind map ........................................................................................ 34Word cloud of ideal work environment descriptions ........................................................... 39Categories of ideal work environment descriptions diagram ............................................ 43
  9. 9. Introduction Word cloud of words used to describe Galen Cranz’s ideal workspace in “Beyond Interior Design” of The Chair (Cranz, 1998)
  10. 10. Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and ExerciseIntroduction “The rhythm of life is when you experience your own body, mind and soul.” (Yogi tea bag, 2011) This study can be introduced with system. What you see before you is before you decide to move it to youra few of the words that instilled passion a spacious office, with natural light workstation. As you survey the room, youfor this research from a few pages of streaming in through the windows on experience a sense of being invited toThe Chair: Rethinking Culture, Body, three sides. Since there is no off-gassing work here because so many differentand Design by Galen Cranz (1998). from walls, carpet, or furniture, and work spaces have been designed toThrough her study of the chair, Cranz because the windows are operable, a accommodate different activities. Whendiscovered that research suggests fresh smell pervades the place. In order you want to do some word processing,chair use deforms the body, which will to minimize the difference between the you can recline in a lounge chair withbe discussed further in the literature temperature indoors and out, the office the keyboard on your lap and the screenreview section about ergonomics. She temperature will be 68 degrees in the mounted at an angle, like a hospital-describes her ideal work environment in winter and 75 degrees in the summer” room television set on an expandablethe chapter “Beyond Interior Design”. (p. 218). arm. You could also choose to dictate toHer ideal workspace does not just alter your computer standing or perched on a Cranz’s ideal workspace takesworking positions; it caters to the overall high stool. When standing, a chest-high ergonomics and body movement intowell-being of users through design that surface within arm’s reach allows you to consideration with a variety of optionsaddresses emotional, social and physical take notes without bending your spine. for body postures. Furniture, equipmentaspects of health. Environmental All your associates in the office wear soft and space accommodate variousinfluences such as music, windows, fresh clothes in the natural fibers of silk, cotton, body positions, movement and supportsmells, moderate temperatures and the and wool, so they do not bind or restrict productivity. Besides interior design,physical environment manipulate people if the person wants to sit cross-legged on fashion design is even considered withemotionally and physically (Sternberg, the padded platforms while discussing suggestions for comfortable flexible2009). Furniture arrangements and business. These yielding clothes also clothing. Such clothing does not restrictspaces can either inhibit or encourage enable anyone who has a kink in the the body from movement if one wantssocial interaction amongst office back to lengthen his or her spine by to stretch out comfortably or participatepersonnel. stretching out on the platforms for a few in mild exercises. “You have a lot of minutes” (p. 219-220).In Cranz’s ideal office space she postural options for working in this office.considers features that appeal to the You can stand to lay out research data, Ergonomic furniture and exercisebody’s senses—hearing, sight, smell and articles, or slides. You can stand or squat equipment are considered for multipletemperature—with music, windows, fresh in front of files to use them. Floor-to- working positions, play and mild exercise.smells and moderate temperatures. ceiling bookshelves allow you to stretch Such furniture and equipment would“When you open the door, a Mozart up or squat down. You can prop books accommodate those who want to takeviolin concerto comes over the sound open on an eye-level-slanted shelf quick breaks, stretch and tone their 2
  11. 11. Introductionbodies, or energize themselves at work. natural environment and other species After reading Cranz’s enlightening“If you were a newcomer, the thing in (Kellert, et al., 1993). Outdoor space and innovative thoughts on her idealthe office that might make you most in workplaces can also be used by workspace, I cannot help but desirecurious is related to exercise: a large personnel for breaking and exercise. the same type of work environment forinflated ball over which staff members “You notice a set of French doors that myself and others.occasionally draped themselves to lead onto a wooden deck or balcony,promote flexibility of the spine. Some vine-covered. Down the steps is a poolsit on it in lieu of a stool. It also keeps or fountain. Sometimes people assumechildren entertained when they visit. You the rest position on the deck or exercisemight be equally intrigued by a cluster or eat or talk on the phone. Insideof three rings of Opsvik pedestals that and outside are not that different—asupport a variety of standing postures. Modernist’s dream” (p. 220).An overhead bar for hanging and an “But this vision need not remain ainverter offer other opportunities to dream. Running throughout this study ofstretch your spine” (p. 220). the chair has been a call to action. First,Access to the natural outdoors and honor your body; learn how to attendnatural elements such as balconies to it, and educate it to communicateor water features support peoples’ with our culture. From this, developinnate desire to be affiliated with the your own ideal environments (p. 221).
  12. 12. Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and ExerciseProblem Statement “Probably the single most important principle of body-conscious design is to use design to keep posture varied and the body moving.” (Cranz, 1998, p. 185) In our Information Age, affluent or hand-written messages, people send widespread computer technology, itpeople all over the world adapt to emails or make phone calls. Telephones seems some people have forgottencomputer technology. Computers are mini-computers; they are even their bodies. People cram informationare ubiquitous, in our pockets, purses, replacing desktops and laptops. With into their brains, an important andoffices, homes, schools, cars. People use new stresses and cultural changes due complicated organ; but many peoplecomputers as encyclopedias, replacing to demands of computer technology, neglect their muscles in today’s age ofbooks with computer monitors, key our workplaces evolve. People should Information Technology. With informationboards, mice, and hard drives. Not only not have to adapt to technology, and computer-technology demandsdo computers replace books, but they technology should adapt to and for in the workplace, employees andhave also taken the place of physical people. employers spend more time sitting atactivity—and human communication. computers, reading display screens, With rapid implementation ofRather than physically delivering verbal going digital, taking work with them on “Something, somewherewent terribly wrong” imageby an unknown artist (NeatoShop, 2011) 4
  13. 13. Problem StatementIntroductiontaking work with them on mobile (Clements-Croome, 2006). more positive, energized, motivateddevices. Such demands can be stressful and more productive. This is analogous Many people accept what space,and harmful for the body and mind; to the argument for evidence-based environment, furniture and equipmenthowever, relief can be found. Such design practices for health and healing they are given to work with withoutthings as: freedom to move between environments; patients heal faster and question. “It is what I am used to,” “It isone social phase and another (from hospitals have higher turnover rates what I have always done,” are commonsolitary work to group interaction), music, when hospital design caters to patient responses of people asked about whyopportunities to engage in spontaneous desires and experience. Workplaces they do what they do. Why must wesocial encounters, opportunity to should perhaps design according to and accommodate ourselves to poorlyengage in creativity, self-expression cater to worker desires and experiences. configured furniture, uncomfortableand exploration, appealing visual Cranz and I believe this is what most working positions and environments?environments, exercise, space for body many work environments need. After all, I hope to improve these conditions. Ifmovements such as exercise stretching most working people spend the majority people had opportunities to question,and a variety of working positions, of their days at work. opportunities to request healthierfurniture and equipment, personal choices, body—conscious and mind-accessories, plant life and association conscious work environments designedwith other species, access to outdoor for movement, multiple working positionsenvironments, and sensory variability and worker preferences, perhapscan provide relief from everyday people would be happier, healthier,stresses and demands in the workplace Steelcase image from Movement Toward Health in the Workplace booklet
  14. 14. Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and ExerciseAssumption There is a disconnect between humans and our immediate environments (Gallagher, 1993). This research study proposes the Patil, 2009; Levine, 2009; Sternberg, pertain to emotional, social and physicalassumption that employees and 2009; Oseland, 2009; Congleton, 2010; well-being: biophilia, ergonomics,employers desire mobility and resources International Ergonomics Association, and exercise. This thesis suggests thatin the workplace that support holistic 2010; Higgs & Pynt, 2010). Perhaps biophilia, ergonomics, and exercise arehealth practices involving biophilia, employees and employers will feel factors that contribute to holistic healthergonomics and exercise. These factors healthier emotionally, socially and in the workplace.have been found to be contributors to physically in environments with accesswell-being and productivity (Gallagher, to natural environments, the outdoors,1993; Tesitel, et al., 1993; Nelson, 1993; and spaces that take ergonomics andWaikar & Bradshaw, 1995; Cranz, 1998; exercise into consideration. HolisticMcDonough & Braungart, 2002; Diener, health factors considered for purposesKing & Lyubomirsky, 2005; Grinde & of this research study are factors thatSteelcase image from MovementToward Health in the Workplacebooklet 6
  15. 15. Significance If we do not provide comfortable environments that fulfill base human needs (emotional, social and physical health) then the building occupants are unlikely to be at their most productive (Oseland,1995, p.246). Studies of biophilia, ergonomics productivity and limit body aches and currently involved in implementing andand exercise have been conducted; pains and health costs, and exercise enforcing holistic health practices intohowever, studies of such specific health stimulates the mind and body, increasing the workplace (Congleton, 2010). Forfactors implemented and incentivized in productivity. example, as found on their website,small US workplaces as well as employer PepsiCo began implementing global This research uncovered workplaces inand employee values and personal workplace wellness programs to North America that offer such amenitiesopinions associated with such factors promote health and wellness for their and related incentives. Pixar, IBM,have not been explored in depth. associates in 2004, called HealthRoads™, PepsiCo, Chase, Johnson and Johnson,Research on biophilia supports the idea a part of their Sustainability Vision. This Glaxo-Smithkline, Wheeler Interests, IBM,that interaction with other species can program helps participating associates Coors Brewing Co., and Walt Disney Co.be healing, ergonomic body-conscious of PepsiCo make informed decisions are a few of the larger US companiesfurniture and equipment increase regarding healthcare as well as develop
  16. 16. Introduction Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exerciseand sustain healthy behaviors with In growing popular efforts to increase (2) The use of effective worksite policiesmotivational incentives. Such behavioral worker health, productivity and and programs can reduce health riskschanges involving HealthRoads™ happiness, it makes sense to incorporate and improve the quality of life for the 135primary focuses on diet, exercise and incentives and programs supporting million full-time and part-time workers innutrition reduce health risks. Participants holistic health into work environments. the United States.are encouraged to seek preventative At the 2010 National Ergonomics (3) Workers spend more than one-thirdcare and work one-on-one with wellness Conference, Jerome, J. Congleton, PhD, of their day on the job and, as a result,coaches to manage existing health spoke of the Healthy Workforce Act of employers are in a unique position toconditions. Tracking their wellness 2009. Although “A resolution affirming promote the health and safety of theirefforts, PepsiCo found that their wellness the importance of exercise and physical employees.initiatives have slowed the rate of activity as key components of a healthyincreased medical costs; for every dollar lifestyle, including in combating obesity, (4) Chronic diseases such as heartspent on workplace wellness during reducing chronic disease, and lowering disease, stroke, cancer, obesity, and2007, they saved approximately $3.45 health care costs” was introduced and diabetes are among the most prevalenton healthcare, reducing healthcare passed by Senate Mary 9, 2011, the and costly worker health problems forcosts for PepsiCo and associates. In Healthy Workforce Act of 2009 did not most employers.2009, PepsiCo’s HealthRoads™ program become law after being introducedreceived external recognition with a in April of 2009 (GovTrack). It is a bill to (5) The use by employers of effectivePlatinum award for Best Employers for amend the Internal Revenue Code of worksite policies and programs canHealthy Lifestyles. Many workplaces 1986 to provide tax credit to employees reduce health risks and improve theimplementing and enforcing holistic for the costs of implementing wellness quality of life for their employees.health practices are larger companies, programs offering health promotion and (6) The good health of workers is goodwhile many smaller companies preventative care (GovTrack.). It was for business because healthier workersare unaware or lack the means to proposed that a fifty percent tax credit miss less work, are more productive, andimplement such practices in their work for the costs of providing employees have lower health care costs.environments. As literature review will with a qualified wellness programshow, many researchers argue that such would be granted to employers. A Congress said it. People spend much ofamenities and opportunities contribute “qualified wellness program” is defined their lives at work, therefore; it is smart toto well-being as well as productive as a program certified by the Secretary begin and influence the implementationsperformance and overall success and of Health and Human Services and of healthy practices and lifestyles inhappiness for employees, employers and consists of a health awareness and workplaces. This research employs acompanies involved. Medical doctors, education component, a behavioral subjective approach to draw attentiondesigners, neuroscientists, even t-shirts change component, and a supportive to the workspace desires of employeesand tea bags support arguments for environment component. In the Healthy and employers. Many people adapt toholistic health in the workplace. Workforce Act of 2009, Congress stated their work conditions and environments its findings about the US workforce (Open rather than question existing policiesThe US Department of Labor, Congress, 2011): and conditions about their and others’Employment Standards Administration personal well-being.promotes labor rights and employment (1) The US has more than 12 millionstandards with the objective of employers and approximately 135 millionfostering economic and social equity working adults.for personnel health and well-being. 8
  17. 17. Scope “Past research has identified many factors, such as demographic, task-related, workstation-related, ergonomic, and psychosocial factors, associated with health complaints of employees engaged in sedentary work.” (Waikar & Bradshaw, 1995, p.18) In an attempt to advocate body- thesis study involve detailed elements of collected using a subjective measureconscious design, health and healing each factor—biophilia, ergonomics, and of self report by participants throughwork environments, this research study exercise. surveys and interviews. Observationsof holistic health in the workplace identified existing elements linked to Health, happiness, productivity,explores emotional, social and physical the specific health factors, biophilia, motivation, and work performancewell-being in small work environments ergonomics, and exercise, such as of participants and offices were notthrough investigation of existing, lack of windows, plants, participant behaviors measured with external measurementsand desires for holistic health factors in and workstations that existed or were in this research study. Only milesfour small North American offices that taking place in participating workplaces. walked were measured externally withare between 1000 and 4000 square feet Comparison of participant opinions in pedometers. Measurements of holisticand employ three to twelve employees. surveys and interviews to observations health factors in the workplace wereSpecific areas of concentration for this and pedometer readings enhanced Primary areas of concentration for thesis study: conceptual framework exploring relationships of the factors: biophilia, ergonomics and exercise, and how they contribute to holistic health within the workplace
  18. 18. Introduction Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exerciseidentification of holistic health factors elements of biophilia, ergonomics andand elements of such factors, providing exercise are actually human needs.transparency of inconsistencies within Although biophilia, ergonomics andcollected data. exercise constitute the basic human needs of emotional health, social healthFurthermore, it is important to note that and physical health; and they can beparticipants’ desires were recorded, not categorized into Abraham Maslow’snecessarily needs. To be clear, a goal Hierarchy of Needs (1943), such as senseof this research study was to acquire of belonging and self-actualization,personal opinions regarding participants’ this research study does not claim suchdesires for elements of the primary desires as needs (Maslow’s Hierarchy ofhealth factors: biophilia, ergonomics Needs is discussed further in literatureand exercise, in their workplaces through review). Further rigorous researchsubjective measures of self report. can determine whether elements ofSurveys and interviews were primarily the holistic health factors, biophilia,analyzed to determine participants’ ergonomics and exercise, are deemeddesires in relation to the health factors of as human needs.this research study. Some environmentalpsychologists, biologists and otherresearchers may claim these desires ofElements of holistic healthfactors: biophilia, ergonomicsand exercise 10
  19. 19. Review of Literature Introduction Numerous literature on topics of Television shows like Rupert Bear relieve stress and have positive effectshealth, holistic health, emotional health, send positive messages to children, such on physical and psychological health.social health, psychological health as when Rupert was outside enjoying Grinde and Patil (2009) share findingsand ergonomics exist. This literature a picnic with his Professor; his Professor of Richard Louv who uses the termreview attempts to share an assortment said: “Fresh air, sunshine and exercise… “nature-deficit” and suggests that “theof information of topics related to this ahh…there’s nothing like it!” (Rupert increase in prevalences of conditionsresearch study’s focus, holistic health in Bear, 1920). Documentaries explicating such as obesity, attention disorders, andworkplaces. Holistic health encompasses poor health practices, such as Super depression is partly due to a decreasea person’s overall health. When a Size me, Food Inc, and The Corporation, in the degree children are exposedperson’s overall health is considered, any and TV shows like The Biggest Loser, to Nature” (p. 2338). Dr. Brown (2009)factors which contribute to a person’s are quite popular today. People are argues that play is beneficial in our lives,well-being are taken into account. expressing concerns for their well-being. “actually making us more productiveAll aspects of people’s needs can be Positive changes in the home and office and happier in everything we do” (p. 7).organized into cognitive, social and in support of health and well-being Dr. Brown talks not just about children atphysical needs; these needs contribute are occurring slowly. Some high school play, he talks about everyone. Adults areto the whole of a person. Although physical fitness education programs grown children. We all need play time,alternative medicine also considers are being enforced with more rigor motivation, and stimulation. Classroomsspiritual aspects when assessing a and seriousness as the US experiences and workplaces need to accommodateperson’s overall well-being, this research an obesity epidemic. As a child, my play time, social activities and providestudy does not attempt to include teachers repeatedly told students to stimulating work environments. “[W]spiritual health in the factors of holistic be quiet, stop fidgeting and remain hile we readily accept that a healthyhealth. Holistic health factors considered sedentary in the classroom so as to focus seed can’t grow into a plant withoutfor purposes of this research study are on our studies; but as Gallagher points right soil, light, and water, and that afactors that pertain to emotional, social out, “America’s obesity epidemic offers feral dog wont behave like a pet, weand physical well-being: biophilia, stunning illustrations of what can happen resist recognizing the importance ofergonomics, and exercise. Literature when motivation and attention become environment in our own lives” (Gallagher,review is organized into subchapters disconnected from daily behavior in 1993, p. 16). For the older and employed,addressing: small sedentary workplaces, general and each other in particular” no longer in a classroom setting, Dr.sedentary work, holistic health, biophilia, (Gallagher, 2009, p. 174). More Brown describes a popular problem,ergonomics, the chair, body and mind, interaction, team work, and play time “We strive to always be productive,exercise, environmental psychology, would enhance motivation, stimulating and if an activity doesn’t teach us skill,health and healing environments. students to find interest in their studies. make us money, or get on the boss’s Studies also suggest that nature can good side, then we feel we should
  20. 20. Introduction Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exercisenot be doing it. Sometimes the sheer students who took PE before mathdemands of daily living seem to rob us reported dramatic improvement in theirof the ability to play” (Brown, 2009, p. standardized tests” (Iskander, 2011).7). As ergonomic research studies show, As research and literature report,workplaces that demand a high level of emotional health, social health andsedentary work and deprive workers of physical health are important factors inhealthy opportunities for interaction and being fulfilled and healthy human beings.play, harm employees and employers. Together, emotional health, social healthQuality of life, blood flow, respiration, and physical health constitute healthcollaboration, injuries, and overall health on a larger scale, holistic health. Factorscan all be enhanced and improved of holistic health, then, are biophilia,when ergonomics are considered in ergonomics, and exercise, which areworkplace development, design and believed to contribute to well-being andprocesses (Congleton, December 2, productivity in the workplace. Observing2010, ErgoExpo presentation). Waikar, et and recognizing employees’ andal (1995) identified factors, such as task- employers’ perceptions of holistic healthrelated, workstation-related, ergonomic, and workplace design have implicationsand psychosocial factors, associated for a healthier workforce and healthierwith health complaints of employees working environments, productivityengaged in sedentary work. Such gains and happier personnel. Winifredhealth complaints often lead to work Gallagher (2009) claims, “Stayinglost to sick days, ergonomic assessments focused is an excellent strategy for well-and medical appointments. Medical being,” and “the skillful managementand insurance costs for employees of attention is the first step toward anyand companies rise and workers’ behavioral change and covers mostcompensation costs increase. Similarly, self-improvement approaches like a vastYerkes-Dodson Law (1908) states people umbrella” (p. 10). Focusing on healthperform better if they are stimulated or in workplaces of the more affluentmotivated (Oseland, 2009, p. 245). A consumer capitalist economies of theChicago high school, Naperville Central more prosperous populations of theHigh School, experiencing the culture planet can be a proactive effort toof fitness has embraced a daily graded enforce some basics of sustainable livingphysical education program. One group by improving quality of life and workingof struggling students at this high school conditions, providing jobs, conservinghave been involved in an innovative natural resources, enhancing economicprogram which schedules PE right before growth and managing risk.their most challenging classes. “In thesix years since that program started,students who signed up for PE directlybefore English read on average a halfyear ahead of those who didn’t, and 12
  21. 21. Review of Literature: Holistic Health Word cloud of words participants used to describe emotional health
  22. 22. Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exercise Holistic Health For purposes of this study, the connections. And the emotions they relationships and overall health (Diener,factors: biophilia, ergonomics and evoke are among the greatest forces King & Lyubomirsky, 2005). Happiness,exercise, have been linked to emotional that affect our hormonal, our nerve an expression of healthy emotions, ishealth, social health and physical health, chemical, and our immune responses— factor contributing to productivity in thewhich constitute holistic health. Holistic and through these, our health and our workplace according to research ofhealth equally encompasses emotional resistance to disease” (Sternberg, 2001, Diener, King & Lyubomirsky. Researchershealth, social health and physical health. p. 133). Essentially, emotions that are have often believed that mere financialIn Dr. Sternberg’s explanations of human rooted in social relationships or mental success made people happy, but recentconnections, she connects relationships capacities can affect the health of research that examined the connectionswith spirituality, emotions, and physical the physical body. The body cannot between desirable personalitywell-being: “Our sense that powerful be improved or worsened without also characteristics, life successes and well-forces beyond our bodies link us to others affecting the mind, and vice versa. being in over 275,000 people revealedis so ingrained that we use phrases such that “happy individuals are predisposed Emotional health has beenas “ties that bind,” “family ties,” and to seek out and undertake new goals in found to contribute to work success,“bonding,” to describe those intangible life and this reinforces positive emotions”Holistic health image derivedfrom Steelcase’s physical healthimage from Movement TowardHealth in the Workplace booklet 14
  23. 23. Review of Literature: Holistic Health Word cloud of words participants used to describe social health
  24. 24. Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exercise(p. 803). Goleman states that “emotions include air, food, water, sleep, sex; then of humankind.are contagious” (2006, p. 13). If emotions security of environment, employment, “Past research has identified manyare contagious, and happiness is a resources, health, property; then factors, such as demographic, task-socially contagious emotion, emotional love, friendship, intimacy, family; then related, workstation-related, ergonomic,health and social health are connected. confidence, self-esteem, achievement, and psychosocial factors, associated respect. The higher-order needs consistAbraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, with health complaints of employees of morality, creativity and problema motivational theory of psychology that engaged in sedentary work” (Waikar solving. Although there is a range ofrepresents a model of human-centered & Bradshaw, 1995, p.18). Gallagher interpretation about how much eachmotivation based on goals, suggests that (1993) states that there is a disconnect of the lower order needs must bepeople have five tiers of needs in order between humans and our immediate satisfied prior to the ability to developto grow into the ultimate person they are environments. Our immediate the capacity of self-realization, humancapable of being (Maslow, 1943). These environments—home environments, work needs consist of emotional, social andfive needs consist of physiological needs, environments and larger urban systems— physical needs. Based on Maslow’ssafety needs, love needs, esteem needs affect us socially and physically, even Hierarchy of Needs, one can say thatand the need for self-actualization. biologically, as where biophilia is workplaces catering to well-being ofThe first four lower need to be satisfied concerned (Dugdill, 2000). Whether personnel take aspects of emotional,before higher-order needs can influence or not these immediate environments social health and physical health intobehavior; hence the hierarchy of this provide space and activities for social consideration—essentially the body andmodel of needs. The lower levels needs and physical activities, our overall well- mind, as they are quite naturally prioritiesSteelcase social health imagefrom Movement Toward Healthin the Workplace booklet 16
  25. 25. Review of Literature: Holistic Health Word cloud of words participants used to describe physical health
  26. 26. Introduction Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exercisebeing is affected. cognitive health, one may be able to • Work tools that come to you and function more efficiently, pleaseantly, are easily adjustable.”Steelcase promotes holistic health with a comfortably.balance of cognitive, social and physical • “Seating that is easily adjustablewell-being through its “movement “Social Checklist”: and made to fit you, not the other waytoward wellness in the workplace” around.” • “Provide a variety of collaborativedesign guides. Printed in the Details spaces.” A work environment that demands orbooklet by Steelcase Inc. (2009) is a provides more space and opportunities“Physical Checklist” as well as cognitive • “Offer collaborative solutions that simply for more body movementand social checklists that can also be work for longer periods of time, keeping promotes physical health. Even movingfound by visiting Steelcase’s website. workers refreshed.” around a little bit more on a daily basis “Cognitive Checklist”: can help maintain healthy body weight • “Train workers to use the and burn calories (Levine & Yeager, ergonomic features of their work • “Work areas that provide sufficient 2009). A healthy body helps a health environment.”lighting.” mind. Research has found that exercise • “Encourage health with employee stimulates the mind and body, increasing • “Provide a variety of solutions for wellness.” productivity.privacy and interaction.” A work environment that encourages Through literature review, previous • “Address information processing freedom and creativity for personnel research studies, a workplace aimingand storage needs of diverse jobs.” welcomes confidence, inspirations and for overall personnel well-being supports • “Work tools that allow you innovation. Emotionally, personnel are cognitive (mental and emotional),to organize your information to affected by their social relationships; social and physical health for a balanceaccommodate the way you work.” and as the mind affects the body and of holistic health. Through workplace vice versa, contributors to social and planning and design, the incorporation • “Workstation that promote emotional health should be considered of elements of biophilia, ergonomics andmovement, keeping users energized.” even in workplace design in order to exercise may help contribute to overall achieve ultimate well-being. Spaces that well-being, as elements of these factorsA work environment that takes into promote collaboration and spontaneus are directly related to cognitive health,considerations elements of ergonomics interaction amongst personnel social health and physical health.such as lighting, space, furniture and accomodate aspects of social health.equipment so that one can work moreefficiently and productively addresses “Physical Checklist”:cognitive health. As the body is affectedby the mind and the mind is affected • “Seating that allows dynamicby the body, bodily discomfort can movement and postural change.”trigger mental or emotioanl frustrations. • Workstations that allow you toResearch has found ergonomic body- work while you stand.”conscious furniture and equipment toincrease productivity and limit body • Seating that keeps you oriented toaches and pains and health costs. With your work.”such accomodations designed for 18
  27. 27. Review of Literature: Biophilia Biophilia Evolutionary psychology is a newer and illuminated regardless of season or (p. 406). Biophilia became a popularscience that argues that “innate human time of the day—although even on a term when Edward O. Wilson publishedbehaviour is governed by adaptations rainy morning, it is brighter outside than Biophilia: The Human Bond with Otherof psychological processes which inside with the lights on” (Gallagher, Species, in 1984. Wilson defined biophiliaevolved to aid our survival and well- 1993, p. 12). Evolutionary psychologists as “the innate tendency to focus onbeing” (Oseland, 2009, p. 250). As a argue that “people feel refreshed sitting life and lifelike processes” (Wilson,result of human’s innate predispositions in a natural environment because 1984, Prologue). To Wilson, it seemedfor survival and well-being, people are nature provides a setting for “non-taxing unquestionable that human beingssocial, needing a sense of community involuntary attention” (Oseland, 2009, have an innate sensitivity to and needand belonging, human sense of direction p. 250). As evolutionary psychologists for other living things, because we haveis based on natural clues such as the argue for innate tendencies to be coexisted in the closest relationshipsun and landmarks, and people want to affiliated with other species and natural with the natural world for so manyexplore what is around them, with clear environments, biophilia is a key theme millennia. According to Wilson, it isviews in all directions. “Only a hundred within evolutionary psychology. To some, ultimately human nature and a geneticyears ago, the overwhelming majority “nature” means plants as in gardens, predisposition, hereditary desire to haveof Americans lived in the country, while forests and parks, but weather and an emotional affiliation with humantoday, most cluster in metropolitan animals (humans included) are also beings and other living organisms (Kellert,areas” (Gallagher, 1993, p. 13). directly connected. Although not may et al., 1993, p. 31). Because elements ofClassrooms teach us that humans, similar studies on the topic of biophilia address biophilia (or lack of) constitute peoples’to other living species, have evolved human preferences for affiliations with physical and social environments,over millions of years responding to earth animals, one study by Tesitel et al. elements of biophilia affect peoples’and sun cycles. Such cycles produced (2001) found that of a community of social health and emotional health. Forpredictable biochemical and behavior approximately six-hundred families in example, a lack of plants or animals maychanges. “Environmentally minded Czech Republic, almost twenty-five weaken one’s emotional, or similarly,scientists have begun to question the percent claimed their pets to be family cognitive health. Grinde and Patil (2009)trade-offs we unwittingly make in order members. These pets consist of mainly report that even though some peopleto live sealed up inside an artificially dogs, budgies, fish, hamsters, turtles, do not express any interest in plantsheated, cooled, and lighted world that guinea pigs, cats and snakes. and nature, the absence of nature canis structured around economic rather actually have a negative effect on them The term biophilia was first coined bythan biologic concerns” (Gallagher, (p. 2339). Although some people may Erich Fromm in The Anatomy of Human1993, p. 13). Gallagher reminds us that suffer from biophobia, a fear of nature Destructiveness (1973). Fromm definedthe Industrial Revolution brought people and other living species, studies report biophilia as “the passionate love of lifeindoors. “Turning away from the natural that the absence of greenery can be and of all that is alive; it is the wish toworld, huge populations gravitated a stress factor, whether the absence further growth, whether in a person,toward a very different one made up of of greenery is noticed consciously or a plant, an idea, or a social group”homes and workplaces that were warm without thinking; “the presence of plants
  28. 28. Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exercisecan impact on the human mind” sun (Gallagher, 1993, p. 12). Gallagher(Grinde & Patil, 2009, p. 2338). notes the startling disconnect in current science studies and theories of theBesides the necessary conversion of sun. “…in the West, exposure to thecarbon dioxide into oxygen, biological sun’s bright light has become erraticplants offer growth, life, change, value, in duration and timing for the first timeaesthetic qualities, emotional benefit, in history, and they [environmentallyand health and healing properties to minded scientists] suspect that the facthumans and other living organisms. that most of us are no longer wakenedWilson’s Biophilia Hypothesis associates by the dawn, drawn outdoors for muchour fondness of and desires for plants of the day by our way of life, and lulledwith our innate desire and genetic to sleep by darkness helps explain whypredisposition towards plants for means up to a third of us suffer from sleep orof survival, food and shelter. “For the mood problems, or both” (Gallagher,indefinite future more children and 1993, p. 14). Hundreds of years agoadults will continue, as they do now, the idea that light affects mental andto visit zoos than attend all major physical health was a widely acceptedprofessional sports combined (at principle. This more recent observationleast this is so in the United States and made by environmentally mindedCanada), the wealthy will continue scientists suggests, as Gallagher puts it,to seek dwellings on prominences that “science forgot about it”, a widelyabove water amidst parkland, and accepted belief many years ago.urban dwellers will go on dreaming ofsnakes for reasons they cannot explain” Despite intuitive thoughts on the(Kellert, et al., 1993, p. 32). benefits of affiliations with nature, an increasing number of studiesIn the second century A.D., Aretaeus report findings that nature providesprescribed for people suffering from psychological and physical healthlethargy to lay in the sunlight because benefits. Grinde and Patil (2009)their disease was gloom (Gallagher, share reports of health benefits from1993, p. 12). The four humors, or body association with nature experiences,fluids, according to Aretaeus: yellow true wilderness experiences,bile, black bile, phlegm, and blood, neighborhood parks, gardens, andwere said to determine everything from natural features around residences:a person’s constitution to his character. nature reduces stress; improvesThese four body fluids were said to attention, by having a positive effectcorrespond to the four elements of on mental restoration and by copingfire, earth, water, and air, and were with attention deficits; and increasesalso related to summer, fall, winter, longevity (p. 2335).and spring; therefore, an individual’sphysiological and behavioral changes William McDonough and Michaelcould be viewed in the context of the Braungart designed an “eco-effective” 20
  29. 29. Review of Literature: BiophiliaIntroductionfactory for Herman Miller that brought not the object of focus (Grinde & Patil,together visions of “a life-centered 2009, p. 2335). Velarde et al. assertcommunity and environment” that a lack of city green spaces or(McDonough & Braungart, 2002, p. unmanaged green spaces can cause75). This factory noticed “dramatic increased anxiety that increases theproductivity gains,” which analyses incidence of crime (p. 2339). Expressingconfirmed were a result of one factor, a growing problem in the United Statesbiophilia. Retention rates were noted as in the 70’s, Scuhmacher noted that,“impressive” and employees who left “Modern man does not experiencethe factory for higher paid jobs returned himself as a part of nature but as anstating they could not work “in the dark” outside force destined to dominate(p. 75-76). Their goal of the design was and conquer it” (Schumacher, 1973, p.to “give workers the feeling that they’d 14). Some propose that love, an aspectspent the day outdoors, unlike workers in of biophilia, will cure this disconnectthe conventional factory of the Industrial between man and nature as well as cureRevolution, who might not see daylight mankind of other worldwide problems,until the weekend” (p. 75). McDonough even health problems in the workplace.and Braungart succeeded in designing “The human need for nature is linked notan ideal work environment for industry just to the material exploitation of theworkers: “We designed the factory environment but also to the influencearound a tree-lined interior conceived of the natural world on our emotional,as a brightly day lit street that ran the cognitive, aesthetic, and even spiritualentire length of the building. There are development” (Nelson, 1993, p. 42).rooftop skylights everywhere the workersare stationed, and the manufacturingspace offers views of both the internalstreet and the outdoors, so that evenas they work indoors, employees get toparticipate in the cycles of the day andthe seasons” (p. 75).A study (Tesitel, et al., 1993) of theabsence of natural components inan urban environment found that theabsence of parks and landscapedcommunity areas limited the ‘pleasantexperience’ of people living in the area.“The absence of plants may suggest an“unnatural”, and thus potentially unsafe,environment;” as plants may affectthe human mind through unconsciousmechanisms, even when plants are
  30. 30. Holistic Health Factors in the Workplace: Biophilia, Ergonomics and Exercise Ergonomics The International Ergonomics turnover and costs” (ErgoExpo, 2010.) weight of users. It is recommended thatAssociation states that “ergonomics armrests be provided for obese people Ergonomists actively analyze human-promotes a holistic approach in which as well as for elderly. Taller chairs are system interactions and the design of theconsiderations of physical, cognitive, easier to exit for older people. system in order to optimize human well-social, organizational, environmental being and overall system performance With concerns for the growing obesityand other relevant factors are taken (IEA, 2011). Ergonomics has implications epidemic in the US, Dr. Congleton reportsinto account” (IEA, 2010, para. 4). for all physical aspects of the workplace: that thirty-five percent of adults in the USErgonomics is a broad discipline furniture, lighting, noise, temperature, are overweight and twenty-six percentincluding occupation health. It is now movement, tools, equipment, machinery, are obese. Obesity is clinically definedapplied to office workstations after devices, and of course people; people as thirty pounds overweight (Levine,first being applied to cockpit design and their physical, psychological and 2009, p. 43). Considering the health risksduring World War II, and then factory social health. A common practice within that come with obesity and the costs ofproduction facilities (Cranz, 1998, p. ergonomics is taking anthropometric such diseases and illnesses, introducing97). “The term “ergonomics” comes design into consideration, such as more movement into the workplacefrom the Greek ergon, meaning “work,” the idea of accommodating the is a preventative measure, similar toand –omics, meaning “to manage.” extreme dimensions and activities of a traditional Chinese healing practices thatThus, ergonomics is the study of the population; because, when equipment use proactive approaches working torelationship between the person and the is designed for the dimensions of an prevent illness. Ergonomists recommendimmediate environment (Cranz, 1998, average person, most users are limited. that personnel sit when they are tiredp. 97). The International Ergonomics By designing for the tallest and the and stand for twenty minutes, threeAssociation Council defined ergonomics shortest percentiles of a user population; to six times per day. Standing deliversin August 2000. Their official definition it is easier for most users to adjust furniture health benefits. Sit-stand workstationsof ergonomics is: “Ergonomics (or and equipment by raising or lowering and workstations like Steelcase’shuman factors) is the scientific discipline for others. If a door knob were placed Walkstation that provide opportunitiesconcerned with the understanding of at average height, a child or a midget and equipment for exercise (Steelcaseinteractions among humans and other would be excluded from its use. General OfficeScapes) offer many benefits toelements of a system, and the profession rules are to design leg clearance for tall personnel working long hours at a typicalthat applies theory, principles, data and people and reach distances for smaller sedentary work station. Dr. Congletonmethods to design in order to optimize people, or better yet, accommodating notes that, depending on body shapehuman well-being and overall system users with adjustable or custom furniture and metabolism, personnel can burn 280performance” (IEA, para. 1). Dr. Jerome. and equipment. Adjustable tables allow extra calories on an average workdayJ. Congleton defines ergonomics as: vertical adjustment of workstations by standing for two hours throughout the“The study of the work to prevent and to accommodate a larger range of workday; equivalent to approximatelycontrol injury and illness while improving possible personnel heights. In addition to twenty pounds of weight lost in one year.wellness, productivity, quality, marketing, height, it is also important to consider the To do this, he recommends:customer service, delivery and reducing 22
  31. 31. Review of Literature: Ergonomicsraising desk heights from thirty to forty ideal situation would allow individuals toinches; raising the chair to stool height choose the most appropriate chair orso as to allow users to easily and freely chairs for themselves.stand up to work periodically; and Why should workers sit? Sitting causesusing a keyboard tray and monitor arm, less fatigue, comforts the knee, hipessentials if an electric height adjustable back, ankle, offers stability, assists in datadesk is not available. By working at sit- entry, allows for use of foot controls,stand-walk workstations, personnel can and accommodates meetings. burn more calories, possibly lose weight, Sit-stand workstations with adjustablerelieve pressure on spinal discs and ease keyboard platforms and monitorsphysical ailments. are recommended by Dr. CongletonWhy should people stand at work? Dr. for workplaces where personnel useJ. Congleton supports standing with computers for more than four hoursjustified reasons: standing allows for per day. GeekDesk® recommendsa wider range of motion, uses larger its product for the options of workingforces, promotes blood flow and sitting and standing at the same desk;postural changes, better respiration and it is electrically operated. They claimreaction alertness, burns more calories, this electric desk adjusts working heightand lowers pressure in low back discs. from sitting to standing (or anywhereWhen we sit, pressure on some spinal in between) at the touch of a button,discs increases thirty percent compared increases productivity, supports a varietyto when we are standing (Cranz, 1998, of positions, reduces back & neck pain,p. 97). Dr. James A. Levine, an obesity helps people feel better and focusedspecialist at the Mayo Clinic, notes stay more easily (GeekDesk, 2011). Thethat, compared to sitting, one can burn sit-stand workstations are recommendedthree times as many calories an hour by Dr. Congelton for personnel whostanding; (Levine, 2009, p. 43). “If sitting are tied to their work areas by phoneis the problem, standing is the answer” or other equipment within reach, for(p. 43). Standing is not necessarily better example, customer service, data entry,than sitting; studies show that sitting and and help desk personnel. Monitorstanding should be alternated, allowing placement for sit-stand workstationsfor movement and multiple positions. should be placed according to theDr. Congleton recommends personnel user. The top of the screen should beto sit when tired and stand when they approximately eye level with the usercan for twenty minutes, three to six and about thirty-two inches from thetimes per day. If options for sit-stand or user; the appropriate location resultsstanding workstations are not provided, in an approximate angle of twenty toother ergonomic solutions are also twenty-five degrees down from the user’spossible. A variety of sizes of chairs to eye height to the monitor screen (Dr. J.meet the varying needs of personnel Congelton, 2010).can be provided. The best and most From top: Varier® Gravity chair designed by Peter Opsvik; Le Corbusier’s lounge chair; Varier® Variable ™ Balans ®, designed by Peter Opsvik

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