Photo of Miner on job, crouched over with poor ergonomicsErgonomics is the study of people at work. More specifically, it is the science of designing workplaces in a manner that reduces risk of musculoskeletal injury while improving work performance. All of this is based on understanding human physical and psychological abilities and limitations, and then applying this knowledge to the design of the man-made environment.

A substantial amount of information regarding ergonomics is available from NIOSH, various universities, and the Board of Certified Professional Ergonomists. This primer provides a summary of ergonomics principles and practices, as outlined below: