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The Biomechanics of Lifting and Materials Handling.

Tichauer-ER; Elbaum-S; Glickman-F; Gold-C; Truber-C
The Center for Safety and the Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine, New York University, Report No. 099-72-0013, :177 pages
Musculoskeletal responses elicited by static lifting were investigated. Kinesiometers were constructed capable of measuring postural changes during standing and seated tasks and which automatically computed cartesian coordinates of anatomical landmarks of individuals engaged in a lifting task. Two signal conditioning units were designed to collect myoelectric signals from the erectors of the spine, the gluteal muscles, and the hamstrings. Kinesiometric and myoelectric data was collected from 24 males and 22 females employed in materials handling tasks. Data was submitted to parametric and nonparametric statistical testing and to speculative, qualitative, and biomechanical analyses. Significant differences were noted between male and female responses to static load holding such as critical loads for changes in basic response mechanisms, materials handling stress when seated without a foot rest, and load lifting stress in the standing position with or without heels. Subjects' responses to static holding in the free standing posture followed a common mode with individual differences. Subjects' responses were aimed primarily at maintenance of postural integrity and stability rather than at direct reaction to the magnitude of the moment applied to the vertebral column. The authors conclude that the isometric elements of a lifting task are more hazardous than other components. They recommend that electromyographic and biomechanical data, gathered from a male population, not be extrapolated to a female working population as the responses of both sexes to static lifting stress are quite different.
NIOSH-Contract; Contract-099-72-0013; Hoisting-equipment; Sex-factors; Ergonomics; Work-performance; Biomechanics; Humans; Biodynamics; Work-analysis; Physical-stress;
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The Center for Safety and the Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine, New York University, Report No. 099-72-0013, 177 pages, 115 references