OHCOW Ergonomics and Musculoskeletal Disorders.

April 2, 2021

At work, we can all suffer from occasional pain and discomfort, but in general work should not hurt.

Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are the most common type of workplace injury in Ontario workplaces. “Musculoskeletal disorders” is an umbrella term for a number of injuries and disorders of the muscles, tendons, ligaments, bone and nerves.

Studies have shown that physical factors in the workplace - how work is organized and the specific tools used as part of that work - can increase a person’s chance of developing a musculoskeletal disorder.

Some employers ignore the role of the workplace in such injuries, and instead blame workers’ low back or shoulder pain on individual factors (e.g. gardening, susceptibility or genetics).

The aim of ergonomics is to match the job to the worker in order to reduce the strain placed on the tissues, muscles and bones, and to prevent injury.

It is crucial to control the hazards that could leads to MSDs. The Occupational Health Clinics for Ontario Workers (OHCOW) provides ergonomic services and supports ensuring that workers are working safely and effectively.

Click here to learn more about the OHCOW Ergonomic learning tools and supports available for workers, employers, and the general public.

Click here to access OHCOW Ergonomic Resources.

Other Resources

Prevent MSDs: Work Shouldn’t Hurt

“MSD Prevention Guideline for Ontario” was a multi-stakeholder initiative led by the Centre of Research Expertise for the Prevention of Musculoskeletal Disorders (CRE-MSD) and funded by the Ontario Ministry of Labour. They were tasked with updating MSD Prevention Guidelines in 2016. Click here to learn more.

  • Click here to access the MSD Quick Start Guideline - General.

[Image credit - ehstoday.com]