The Interactive Health and Safety Company (iHASCO), a leading UK supplier of Health and Safety training, have taken the initiative and made May the month to get on top of workplace DSE training
– optimising seating position and workstation layout, screen position, keyboard and mouse use to help prevent headaches, eyestrain and health problems associated with poor posture. The beauty of our DSE training is its simplicity – a small adjustment to your chair backrest could make all the difference.
Are you sitting comfortably? How often do we really think about how we sit at work? In our hectic daily schedule, it's often just a case of get to the office, sit down, head down and get on with it. But everyone who habitually uses a computer at work, even if they work from home should have Display Screen Equipment Training – it’s the law and it really makes sense. Each year statistics from the Health and Safety Executive bear out concerns with the most commonly reported illnesses – the sort of problems exacerbated by poor posture and typing position, such as musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and repetitive strain injuries (RSIs) - accounting for more than half of all absences from work. Last year that was about 9 million days lost. That’s a LOT of time off!
Bradley Worsfold, director of the Interactive Health and Safety Company warns that: "The majority of people don’t realise the long-term damage their sitting position could be doing to their backs. It’s because the discs that make up your back have very little nerve supply, so any pressure or stress from poor posture aren’t felt straightaway - in fact you may not feel anything for a long time, the problem simply builds and builds over time and then all of a sudden an awkward movement can result in agony. A simple adjustment to your workstation layout may be all that’s needed to help you sit with a better posture and that’s one of the areas highlighted in our DSE training programme."
The exponential rise in the use of computers and the very static nature of this sort of work means that a large proportion of people are sitting in relatively stationary positions for much of the day. This is often without taking the time to correctly adjust their chair and screen height or distance, or getting the keyboard and mouse in the right position – it’s just storing up problems for the future. If the screen is badly set up with characters which are difficult to see – too small, not sharply formed or with poor contrast, or if your workstation is in such a position that the screen or even the desk surface is subject to glare, eye-strain and headaches can start to become a problem too.
It’s the same with laptops; in fact posture can be even more of a challenge when using a laptop. How often do we put a laptop on the seat beside us and then turn sideways to use it? How often do we use a laptop in poor lighting or cramped positions? Display Screen Equipment training should also include looking at noise, lighting, temperature and humidity – the environment should be comfortable to work in. Trying to concentrate with incessant, regular or even irregular loud noise is very distracting and can be extremely stressful. Everyone who works at a desk for a good part of their working day simply needs to spend a few moments at the start of each day ensuring their own comfort.
And why not set May as the month to complete the training, and then remember each May to repeat a full self-assessment of the work area? The Display Screen Equipment Training programme from the Interactive Health and Safety Company is available on free trial. It includes, not only the training required, but also a full personal workstation assessment, the results of which are stored and concerns flagged up in an easy-to-read downloadable format, enabling managers to deal with them promptly. It is available both ONLINE and on CD-ROM. With prices starting at £50+vat per year for 25 users ONLINE or £165+vat one-off cost for the CD-ROM, it’s a cost-effective and efficient way of preventing long-term health problems and a valuable resource wherever there’s a large amount of desk-bound work. Why not try it this May?
About the Interactive Health and Safety Company (iHASCO)
The Interactive Health and Safety Company (iHasco) is one of the fastest growing providers of Health and Safety training in the UK. Training is provided either ONLINE or in CD-ROM format and current titles are Fire Awareness in the Workplace, Fire Warden Training, Manual Handling in the Workplace, Display Screen Equipment Training and the latest title is Slips, Trips and Falls, released September 2011. The Interactive Health and Safety Company is based in Berkshire.
The Interactive Health and Safety Company
5 Bracknell Beaches, Old Bracknell Lane West, Bracknell