Home interior decor tips: Ways to build your kitchen in an ergonomic space

When we talk about spaces in our homes forming our comfort zone, the functionality of the spaces designed becomes the most important part of the thought process that goes into it as every user is unique and each family has its own style of living hence, ergonomics plays a vital role even in kitchens. There are many factors concerned with the designing and arranging of things in spaces enabling the user and the things to interact most efficiently.

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Khaninda Barman, Co- Founder of Wurfel, insisted that the primary objective of an ergonomic kitchen is to minimise stress while working by means of some simple yet effective tips and tricks. He suggested:

1. Ensure uninterrupted workflow within the three primary kitchen zones, namely the sink, hob and the refrigerator; also known as the kitchen work triangle.

2. Separate the kitchen layout into different zones such as cooking, washing, food preparation area, storage area for food, storage area for cookware etc.

3. Maintain an uninterrupted flow in your kitchen design by placing the tallest unit of your kitchen on one end of the continuous countertop.

4. Install a combination of ambient and task lighting in your kitchen for high functionality.

5. Place frequently used items of your kitchen close to the countertop for easy accessibility.

6. Optimise the space by utilising the corners of L-shaped and U-shaped kitchens with various corner unit solutions.

7. Opt for drawers of varying sizes for your utensils and store them according to their weights and sizes.

8. Store all the cleaning supplies in the under-sink area so that you can access them with ease.

9. Store all your electrical appliances like the oven, toaster, juicer etc., in a large cabinet to maintain an organised countertop.

10. Ensure proper ventilation in your kitchen by switching on the exhaust and chimney to keep foul odours at bay.

Shruti Jain, Head of Department, Faculty of Architecture and Design at Manav Rachna International Institute of Research and Studies, too highlighted that there are many factors concerned with the designing and arranging of things in spaces enabling the user and the things to interact most efficiently. Kitchen being the most functional area in a home, she advised some ways to build it in the most ergonomic way:

• The kitchen layout should be thoughtfully planned so that one does not have to run a marathon to cook

• The standard size in the kitchen is more significant but at the same time the kitchen should be designed to adapt to the user and not vice versa.

• Ensure to have a good working triangle between the cook top, the sink and the refrigerator.

• We must always keep the travel distance short between these functional areas so that it is easy to do the work while cooking.

• Storage spaces in the kitchen should be well planned with segregation of the perishable and non-perishable items. A good single or double pantry pullout can be designed as per the size of the kitchen.

• Modular planning allows flexibility of use in the kitchen. So, we must choose the modular fittings wisely as per the requirement, the size of the kitchen and our budget.

• Having more drawers and less shutters in the cabinet area can enhance the usability of storage spaces under the counter hence, avoiding bending to take out or store items.

• On the counter accessories and fittings as well as multi-tiered storage racks can make the kitchen a more functional space. Ease of use and accessibility for under the counter as well as over the counter/overhead storage is necessary and must be customized as per the average built all the family.

• Good ambient lighting and appropriate task lighting on countertop areas are necessary for functionality and aesthetics too. These small alterations in design can save time and effort and avoid inconvenience and strain while working.

• Finally, ensure good plumbing and electrical socket placement for ease of use for all kitchen electrical appliances. We must also ensure that each appliance has its own space to use them as well as store them. For example, we may install a rolling shutter to keep the electrical appliances like food processor, coffee machines etc.

With all these in place, you can prevent unnecessary bending, twisting or turning to reach out for things in the kitchen and make everyday cooking an effortless experience. Enjoy building the most functional kitchen to give yourself an easy and fun time cooking while using this space.

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