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Did you know that by learning some simple ergomonics you can not only prevent every day fatigue, but you can also prevent future health problems commonly seen by healthcare providers like Stacey L. Doyan, Occupational Therapist?
Let Stacey's tips work for you! Learn the do's and don'ts for Hair Cutting Professionals
Ergonomics for the Hair Cutting Professional by Stacey L. Doyon, OTR/L, CHT
Look into the new variety of scissors. Some have swivel thumbs, others have adjustable thumb inserts to fit your thumb properly. Some of the new scissors have an offset hinge that allows the scissors to close completely with little finger and thumb movement. *ShearsforHair carries a number of these
To Avoid RPM, Repetive Motion Disease, Use a variety of shears, mix it up! By not using the same type shear, with the same type of handle, for every cut, day in and day out you are avoiding RPM and potentially Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Combs, brushes, etc…. should have large handles on them. Only use the pick comb when you absolutely need it. Try to keep your wrists in neutral (straight) positions when using any tools.
Look for quality hair dryers that are lighter in weight. *This applies to all of your tools, flat irons, curling irons, hair brushes, hair clippers, trimmers, etc
Make sure you lower the client as for down in their seat as possible so you do not have to reach above shoulder level to cut their hair. On the other hand, when cutting around the clients’ neck, you may need to raise the seat so your head is not bent too far forward. Positioning the client has to be a balance between your shoulders being too high or your head being too flexed (bent forward). *If you are looking at renting a space or a booth, always check the chair and make sure it works properly
Always wear appropriate shoes. Good arch support and shock absorbing soles or inserts. Stay away from high heals, sandals, etc….that don’t give any support. Using a shock absorbing mat (or shoe inserts) will help decrease fatigue in your whole body.
Have clients assist you by holding items (foils, papers for perms, rollers) as much as possible. This will allow you to avoid having to hold too much at once and/or aid in preventing you from twisting/turning into bad positions. *Clients usually don't mind helping
When scheduling clients try to keep the high intensity work spaced out (avoid booking 2 perms back to back or foils etc.) Try to alternate these tasks with simple cuts. Also, taking your day off in the middle of the week is better for your body or alternate days (2 days on one day off, and so on).
Working 10 hour days is hard on your body. If your schedule demands this, YOU MUST TAKE BREAKS!!! A short break in the morning and afternoon along with a 30min lunch break is the best example of this. You need to give your body a chance to rest. Incorporating stretching between clients in fingers and wrist can also alleviate fatigue and overuse symptoms.
Special thanks to Stacey L. Doyan, OTR/L, CHT, of Orthopaedic Associates of Portland, one of the premier orthopaedic groups in Maine for this valuable information. Please feel free to contact them with any problems or concerns you may have regarding your health. Considering the lack of health insurance most hair care professionals face, we want you to keep you up to date on ways to prevent health problems now and in the future!
Our Customers Are Our Number one Priority and that includes helping you take care of yourself!
Note: Text Beginning with * are Shears4Hair original content and not that of Stacey. Shears4Hair just wants to keep you informed with helpful tips!