The Many Benefits of Ergonomic Tools

Equipment design is more user focused than it has ever been, helping workers be productive with minimal body strain

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Not too long ago a tool’s impact on its user was not given much thought. The expectation was that the trade professional would adapt to the tool, not the other way around.

Today, that reality has shifted. Manufacturers take the time to observe and understand the user’s experience to find new ways to enhance tool ergonomics. These insights, combined with a better understanding of ergonomics and advances in technology, are allowing for the development of more thoughtful, ergonomic tools. For example, new technologies have reduced the size and weight of tools. Brushless motors, battery technology and changes in material application have led the way for more ergonomic designs. 

If you are considering swapping out older tools for newer ergonomically designed ones, think about the various benefits. For example, an ergonomic tool provides trade professionals: 

  • Peace of mind

No tradesperson wants to come to work thinking that that they might get injured during their workday, particularly not by their tools. Providing well-designed ergonomic tools ensures that the individual is healthier, less stressed and looks forward to their workday.  

  • Reduced body strain 

Ergonomic tools are designed to align with the body’s natural movement so that they have as little effect on the body as possible. It reduces the likelihood that users will suffer strains or sprains after a day of working in confined or difficult positions.

  • Enhanced job performance 

Ergonomic tools increase job efficiency. Wasted motions are less likely when an individual uses ergonomic tools, allowing the worker to get more done in the same amount of time. And because ergonomic tools are designed to work with the body, pumpers and plumbers likely will not need to take breaks as often due to aches and pains, which also increases efficiency. This leads to increased productivity that allows jobs to get done quicker. 

  • Improved job capabilities

Ergonomic tools can increase a worker’s capabilities. Using the tools in natural positions means they will not lose power bending and twisting, which allows them to do more than they might using non-ergonomic tools.

The benefit is equally significant for a business. The science of ergonomics has proven that if tools cause pain, discomfort, or distraction from a job in some way, it will affect a company’s productivity, the health of its employees, and the company’s bottom line. Businesses are finding ergonomic tools result in:  

  • More engaged employees 

When a company provides employees with a properly designed, ergonomic tool, employees will notice the company is committed to their health and safety. Reducing employee fatigue and discomfort can reduce turnover, decrease absenteeism, improve morale, and increase employee involvement.

  • Fewer errors 

If an employee is distracted by pain or fatigue caused by their tools, it leads to mistakes, and mistakes lead to downtime and cost. Having employees focused on their work ensures fewer errors and keeps the employee engaged. Investment in ergonomics could make all the difference to a satisfactory outcome.

  • Increased productivity

The more focused employees are in doing their job, the more productive they are. Ergonomics can make all the difference. Ergonomics are meant to make things feel safer and more natural, and not distract the employee from their work. When the body is less strained, especially in the case of repetitive motions, the health of employees will improve.

The benefits of ergonomics are felt daily on job sites. They are an answer to trade professionals’ desire for tools that are not only safe, but that also make their jobs easier and provide the confidence that they will be able to have a long and productive career. 

About the Author: Don Embree is an industrial design manager for RIDGID, a global manufacturer of more than 300 dependable and innovative tools, trusted by professional trades in over 100 countries. Learn more at


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