When we look at what ergonomics is really all about, the dictionary tells us that it is the study of the workplace and how its equipment can be designed to offer better productivity, efficiency, safety, and comfort. The difference between this description and the definition of what the Alexander Technique is all about, is that the Alexander Technique studies the human body, and how it can best be used for productivity, efficiency, safety, and comfort. One looks at the workplace, the other looks at the worker.
Is Ergonomics the Sole Answer?
Everybody blames their work environment for giving them aches and pains. Cars, sofas, work stations, chairs and other assorted furniture and office equipment are all to blame. However, good ergonomics in the workplace is only part of the answer. The missing piece into solving all these conditions is how we use our bodies in the workplace. Even an award winning ergonomically designed chair will be of little use if your sitting posture is incorrect, and you are not using your body well.
Little Attention to the Body
Most people do not even think about how they use their bodies at work, they just sit down and boot up their computer or similar. Often many of us take for granted how we sit, walk, stand, type, eat – it is simply accepted.
The big question is why some of us can sit at a terminal all day and tap away with no detrimental health affects, and another person is in chronic pain only in a matter of minutes? Is it only the fault of the chair, keyboard, mouse or desk? Or is it that these two people are doing something different?
There is a growing theory that it is not ergonomics so much that makes our life easier in the workplace, rather it is the way we use our bodies when we are there. Perhaps the Alexander Technique, should be renamed as Human Ergonomics!
The technique is all about teaching us to use our bodies better, that promotes productivity, efficiency, safety and of course gives maximum comfort. If you use your body correctly and with a good ergonomically designed work-space then the benefits include a reduction in general aches and pains, increased energy throughout the day, better posture, better self-control and heightened confidence, it can also lead to better clarity of thinking and enhanced performance.
Improve Your Personal Activities
Everything we have said so far will greatly enhance your work experience, but this will be of little use if you are doing activities outside of your work-space that are harming your body. Have you ever thought the pain in your lower back when you are sitting at your desk at work may have been caused by your weekend activities?
Many simple household chores can even cause chronic pain if you have the wrong equipment or are doing them wrong. But this can be solved, and that is the good news. You can learn how to do just about anything correctly so you do not gain injury. And perhaps if you study the Alexander Technique, then this will tell you how to do things properly and your life will take more comfortable turn for the better.