An exploratory study of moderate physical activity and selected design attribute effects on earmuff attenuation.
Am Ind Hyg Assoc J 1989 Sep; 50(9):480-485
An exploratory study was conducted to investigate the effects of variations in earmuff design attributes of headband compression force and earcup cushion material, the effects of moderate work related physical activity over a 75 minute wearing period, and the relationship between the design attributes and the earmuff's susceptibility to attenuation loss caused by the physical activity. Twelve men and 12 women participated in the study. A real ear attenuation at threshold (REAT) testing procedure was used to collect attenuation data on the subjects prior to and following completion of a simulated work task. The findings indicate that moderate work related movement significantly decreased low frequency attenuation but by only about 1.5 decibels (dB) at 125 hertz (Hz). A high headband compression force increased the attenuation by about 1.5 to 4dB at 125, 250, 500, and 8000Hz. No significant differences were noted at any frequency between cushion types. The authors conclude that there was a small effect of moderate physical work activity on hearing protector effectiveness which illustrates the importance of certain earmuff design parameters to achieved attenuation.
NIOSH-Publication; NIOSH-Grant; Noise-exposure; Industrial-noise; Hearing-protection; Personal-protective-equipment; Sound-attenuation; Humans; Physical-exercise; Ear-protectors
Indus Engr and Operations Res Virginia Polytechnic Institute Blacksburg, VA Blacksburg, VA 24061
American Industrial Hygiene Association Journal
Virginia Polytechnic Inst and St Univ, Blacksburg, Virginia