NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search

The influence of handle diameter on manual effort in a simulated assembly task.

Grant KA; Habes DJ; Steward LL
Advances in industrial ergonomics and safety IV. Kumar S, Mital A, eds., New York: Taylor and Francis, 1992 Aug; 4:797-804
This study evaluated the effect of three cylindrical handle diameters on manual effort in a simulated assembly task. Sixteen right handed men participated in the study. A simulated industrial workstation was designed for the study consisting of a height adjustable chair and table positioned in front of a free standing pulley system. When seated the subject's knees were bent at about 90 degrees and the feet were flat on the floor. The handle was positioned about 43.2 centimeters above the table, in a sagittal plane with the participant's right shoulder. Participants grasped the handle with the right hand and pulled it down to a target marked on the work table. The results demonstrated that even a small change in handle diameter of plus or minus 1.0 centimeters can have significant effects on manual effort. A handle which allows some overlap between the thumb and forefinger may be better for some applications than a larger handle. The authors suggest there may be a benefit to manufacturing tools with different sized handles to allow users with larger and smaller grips to select handles best suited for their hand size. The relationship between handle size and anthropometric dimensions should be an important consideration in future handle evaluations.
Musculoskeletal-system-disorders; Hand-tools; Muscle-function; Assembly-line-workers; Carpal-tunnel-syndrome; Cumulative-trauma-disorders; Human-factors-engineering; Biomechanics;
Publication Date
Document Type
Conference/Symposia Proceedings
Kumar S; Mital A
Fiscal Year
Priority Area
Source Name
Advances in industrial ergonomics and safety IV. Proceedings of the Annual International Industrial Ergonomics and Safety Conference held in Denver, Colorado, 10-14 June 1992. The Official Conference of the International Foundation for Industrial Ergonomics and Safety Research
Page last reviewed: February 25, 2022
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division