Ergonomics is just as important in kitchens as it is in offices. Performing repetitive actions can cause repetitive strain injury and bad backs.In the kitchen an equal amount of energy is used in bending, stretching and wandering around trying to remember where you left things!It is estimated that about 360 different actions, workflows and journeys are made in the kitchen every day.In the 1920s and 1930s Bauhaus studies took into account work flows in the kitchen and by the 1950s this had developed into the “Kitchen Triangle” which implied a logical relationship between the main work areas.
One of the implications of this approach is planning the kitchen into zones, keeping the least used utensils at higher or lower levels and the most frequently used items at a more natural level.This saves a lot of time and cuts the amount of stretching and bending required. To many people, the cooker is the real heart of the kitchen. Range cookers offer the versatility and convenience of roasting, baking and grilling all at the same time. Although they take up more space (60cm – 150cm) than a conventional cooker, they do deliver superb cooking results and can add value as well as appeal to your home.
Some designers insist on planning your kitchen “in reverse” and suggest that deciding where you’re going to put major kitchen appliances like washing machines should be last on the list.Instead, they start with what storage space you are going to need and work around the space you will be able to allocate to each zone in order to have an ergonomic kitchen. These zones are usually organised clockwise for right-handed people and anti-clockwise for left-handed cooks. For more compact modern kitchens or those where space is severely restricted microwaves are the prefect solution. They are eminently practical and can be placed virtually anywhere in the kitchen layout. Despite some prejudices, using a microwave oven will ensure more nutrients are retained during the cooking process and give some foods like vegetables a better taste and texture.