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The Effects of Exercise on the Health and Performance of Data Entry Operators.

Authors
Swanson-NG; Sauter-SL
Source
Work with Display Units 92, Selected Proceedings of the Third International Scientific Conference on Work with Display Units, Berlin, Germany, September 1-4, 1992 1993:288-291
Link
NIOSHTIC No.
00224129
Abstract
To determine the effectiveness of exercise as a means of counterbalancing the strains inherent with repetitive data entry work, a study was conducted on 37 healthy female data entry clerks. The subjects were required to perform a randomly assigned, right handed data entry task with either passive rest breaks or exercise breaks in a 400 minute workday for 2 consecutive days. Women in the rest break session sat passively during the 3 minute breaks (at 50 minute intervals in the morning and three times during the afternoon) or 30 second breaks (every 10 minutes). Women in the exercise break session performed small neck, shoulder, back, and extremity exercises during the same break periods. The effects of exercise included two health measures (musculoskeletal discomfort and mood state) and a productivity measure. Musculoskeletal discomfort was assessed by discomfort in the legs, back, neck, buttocks, and arms. Mood scale was determined by levels of fatigue, boredom, and workload dissatisfaction. The two health measures were evaluated before and after the workday, and before and after midmorning, lunch, and mid afternoon rest breaks. Productivity was measured by keystrokes per hour continuously throughout the workday. Statistical analysis showed no differences in musculoskeletal discomfort, mood state, or productivity between the two break conditions. Subjects from both conditions reported increasing muscle strain, particularly in the right upper extremities. Increasing levels of boredom, fatigue, and work dissatisfaction were reported from both groups. While differences were not observed in baseline performances for the two break conditions, further analysis revealed a decline in keystroke performance in the latter half of the workday from the rest break group, while no change was observed for the people from the exercise break condition until the last workday. In general, no difference in physical wellbeing or productivity was observed between passive rest and exercise breaks; however, the authors suggest that exercise breaks may stabilize workday performance.
Keywords
Video-display-terminals; Office-workers; Rest-periods; Physical-exercise; Work-performance; Work-intervals; Repetitive-work; Data-processing;
Publication Date
19930101
Document Type
Conference/Symposia Proceedings;
Editors
Luczak-H; Cakir-A; Cakir-G;
Fiscal Year
1993
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Source Name
Work with Display Units 92, Selected Proceedings of the Third International Scientific Conference on Work with Display Units, Berlin, Germany, September 1-4, 1992
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