What Is an Ergonomic Home?

What Is an Ergonomic Home?

Ergonomics is the practice of designing and arranging objects and furnishings with a focus on usability and safety. In interior decor, form should never come before function. How can you balance the two?

Employing poorly designed furniture can lead to adverse effects on the body, especially the spine, and on overall health. The consequences of a non-ergonomic environment are not instantaneous but subtlety and slowly build up over time. The resulting physical disorders will likewise take a long time to resolve and can even be irreversible, permanently impacting a person’s comfort levels and mobility. So, what can you do?

An Ergonomic Kitchen

The work triangle is the best know kitchen design principle. This rule states that the kitchen’s three main work areas, the sink, cooktop, and fridge, should be laid out in a triangular shape. If your kitchen is large enough to accommodate this configuration, you will have an optimally ergonomic cooking space. To resist the urge of climbing onto a chair or the countertop, you should also consider adding footstools for easy access to the upper shelves.

An Ergonomic Living Room

Surprisingly, reclining in the living room can cause back and neck pain! Integrating curved lines, and therefore eliminating the sharp angles that pull the body out of alignment, is a smart way of making this room more user-friendly. Plus, gently undulating lines are far more relaxing! Every decor element—from the art to the furniture—should be selected for its cocooning effect, maximizing comfort. Such “stress-free” pieces are perfect for rooms where ergonomic shapes and designs come together. Reclining armchairs, upholstered sofas, L-shaped sectional couches (or corner couches), and rounded edges are both cozy and kind to the body, even after several hours of lounging.

An Ergonomic Home Office

Long periods in a static posture are very damaging to the spine. To reduce the risk of injury, get an adjustable desk that will allow you to work both sitting and standing. When sitting, make sure your screen is slightly below eye level, that your elbows and knees can rest at a 900 angle and that you have sufficient lighting.

An Ergonomic Bathroom

Most home accidents occur in this room as this is where the danger of falling is the greatest. Non-slip flooring as well as grab bars, if needed, in the shower and the bathtub and by the toilet can be installed to reduce this risk.

As a General Rule

Make sure you leave enough space between the various pieces of furniture in a room. Our brains work out how to navigate an environment before it signals our limbs to move. This can become quite difficult if there is less than 50 cm between furnishings. In fact, this recommendation has been even adopted as a Feng Shui principle.


To summarize, a sedentary lifestyle is the evil of our time. Don’t maintain the same posture for long periods when working or relaxing, move around frequently, and rest in positions that reduce the risk of injury.

RE/MAX Québec

By RE/MAX Québec

By RE/MAX Québec

A leader in the real estate industry since 1982, the RE/MAX network brings together the most efficient brokers.