Human Resources Division

Using your tablet (Apple iPad, Samsung Galaxy Tab, and Amazon Kindle Fire) comfortably and safely

As with every new technology, people raise concerns about the safe and ergonomic use of the new tablets. Here are some tips for using your tablet in the most comfortable, ergonomic way possible.

  • Use it as a great media tool, not a computer. The tablet was designed to provide a portable work tool and flexible media consumption – movies, pictures, books, music – for short periods of time, but it was not intended to be used for eight hours a day.
  • Try an external keyboard if you are going to spend much time typing emails or even word processing. The tablet can be a great space saver while traveling or commuting, but was not ergonomically designed for long-term repetitive movements such as keying. Review the possible use of a Bluetooth mini keyboard for use with your tablet.
  • Take advantage of its flexibility. One of the best things about the tablet is the flexibility. You can now view media anywhere, and from any position. Use this feature to your advantage. Muscle strain happens with repetitive motion or sustained positions, so move about and change your position frequently. Don’t always sit at a desk but change your posture regularly.
  • Add a stand for more comfortable viewing. The position of the screen is often one of the biggest challenges for the tablet. Don’t use it on a flat surface like your lap or a table top for long periods, say over 15 minutes; this will result in neck strain. If you are working for an extended period of time, you will significantly benefit from an tablet stand or similar, review what is available to assist. Better still, use the tablet stand on a table-top.

Enjoy the flexibility and portability of your tablet, without falling victim to poor ergonomics. Try using a keyboard for emails and other typing. And for long-term use, add a portable stand. A little thought and preparation can help you appreciate the benefits and avoid the challenges of your tablet use.

 

Return to ergonomics and computer work.

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3rd July 2012