Children's Ergonomics

Enabling young people to learn in a healthy environment

The situation

Children are not currently protected by legislation in the same way that adults are in the workplace in Europe. In many schools there is a lack of appropriate equipment such as school furniture and activity based learning techniques and environments to improve posture, fitness, attention and attainment. All too often products and services intended for children fall woefully short of the criteria expected for adults.

There is growing evidence that university age students are suffering more than ever before and this in turn is increasing the risk of new strains of ill health for young people starting work for example, visual and hearing impairment through to MSDs and technology addiction. Early ergonomics intervention and education from childhood is considered to be critical for the global economy and individuals alike.

Aims of the group

We want to play our part in helping young people develop good habits and enter the workplace with less ill health and injuries and have a more positive approach and attitude towards wellbeing. We hope to increase the knowledge of good ergonomics among those working with and designing for children and establish best ergonomics practice across a range of topic areas:

  • Furniture & postural health education
  • Technology
  • Environmental Factors
  • Multiple Learning Styles/intelligences
  • Special Education
  • Education of benefits of good ergonomics (raising awareness)

We also aim to:

  • Raise awareness of the role of ergonomics in protecting and enhancing children’s physical and mental development.
  • Contribute to the health, wellbeing and learning capacity of young people throughout their formal educational years through the application of ergonomics.
  • Nurture and encourage the development of good habits into adulthood through improved behaviour, posture, movement, exercise, awareness of ergonomics, furniture and environment and responsible use of technology.
  • Encourage parents, health practitioners and education leaders to think again about the lack of health and safety legislation, guidance and awareness protecting children during this essential part of their physical and mental development.

We're collating research and developing a ‘Well Learning Charter’ to help raise awareness of the role of ergonomics in protecting and enhancing children’s physical and mental development.