Ergonomics and Anthropometrics
“άνθρωπος μέτρον” – “anthropos metron” – Man is the measure of all things “ – Protagoras
Treating a simple logo design, car badges or decorative logo with an ergonomic/anthropmetric approach.
At least in this instance, small measurements is imperative to the scale, sizing and proportions.
A careful eye identifies critical measurements well in advance prior to fabrication.
The intent is to remain sensible in terms of both fabrication and final product.
Designers successfully employ anthropometrics and ergonomics to pertinent design scenarios.
Anthropometrics involves taking measurements of the human body and providing meaningful data needed by designers.
Anthropometrics helps designers collect useful data.
For instance, head circumferences from a safety helmet design.
In this example, as there is a large variation in size, the designer would need to build some adjustment into the safety helmet design.
Ergonomics incorporates the use of anthropometric data when product design improves the user experience.
If a designer doesn’t use anthropometric data during the design process, it often leads to a poor user experience causing discomfort, pain and potential injury.
Ergonomics is a also consideration that leads to user-friendly product design.
Size, weight, shape, position of buttons and controls are aspects contributing to ergonomic product design.
Anthropometric Design Guidelines
- Table height makes it easy to reach the keyboard and mouse.
- Monitor height and angle of the monitor makes it easy for the user to see the screen, thus reducing neck, eye and back strain.
- Adjustable seats for a comfortable user height.
- The user sits at a comfortable distance from the desk thus preventing overreach on keyboard and mouse.
- Position can be changed by adjusting the armrests and backrest.
A correct seat position reduces body strain and increases the view angle of the screen.
Thus, designers use anthropometric design data to ensure a product is comfortable for the user.
It is difficult to design a product that everyone is able to use comfortably.
Therefore, product design caters to a demographic between the 5th and 95th percentile:
- The 5th percentile are the 5 per cent of people who are smaller in size
- The 50th percentile are people of average size
- The 95th percentile are 5 per cent of people who are larger in size.