Ergonomics is a study of human activities. It deals with different aspects of working environment in relation to comfort and efficiency. This discipline is concerned with the proper equipment, as well as the most optimal organization of movements during any activity. The main goals of ergonomic researches are to ensure the productivity and to prevent any injuries at workplaces.
The first applications of this science date back to ancient times. A number of archeological findings prove that some ergonomic rules were used by the Hellenes in the fifth century before our era for designing their tools and dwellings. Similar principles were used at the households of the ancient Romans and Egyptians.
Later, the organization of life and work underwent a number of significant changes. People developed various principles for different activities. After some time, ergonomics gained scientific background and became an independent discipline. Namely, a theory of scientifically efficient management was created by Frederick Taylor in the nineteenth century. His main idea was to reduce the number of movements for increasing the productivity.
The twentieth century demanded new principles of military efficiency due to wars hat tool place at that time. Human factor started to be seriously considered in the design of military machines and aircrafts. A few decades later, technological progress caused the need for new ergonomic principles to be implemented in the sphere of electronics and computers.
Eventually, a number of ergonomic organizations appeared lately. One of the most notable ones is named Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). It deals with the study of comfortable working conditions and risk factors at the workplaces. It is stated that not only physical environment, but also psychological aspects of jobs are vital for safety and efficiency of workers.
To conclude, it should be said that proper organization of human activities is vital for the work result, regardless of the era, country, and specificity of the job. However, ergonomic principles have changed with time in order to satisfy the concrete demands of different occupations.