Evaluation and comparison of lift styles for an ideal lift among individuals with different levels of training.

Affiliation

School of Occupational and Public Health, Faculty of Community Services, Ryerson University, Toronto, ON, Canada. Electronic address: [Email]

Abstract

Training for safe lifting techniques is used by employers to lower their workers' exposure to risk of workplace injuries. To determine effectiveness of training, 266 attendees at two professional conferences were asked to identify and demonstrate their preferred lift technique with the demonstration being an ideal floor-to-waist height lift of a10-kg weighted crate. 'Bend your knees' was the most frequent preferred cue for each of the self-reported participant groups: untrained (n = 65), trained (n = 86), and trainers (n = 115) according to safe lifting techniques. The demonstrations showed that this cue was incorporated into the skill of lifting by all groups. Trained participants showed a stronger conformity for depth of squat; but, the overall variability suggested a lack of consensus on the ideal depth of squat. The trained group experienced less loading at L5/S1 (p = .021) compared to untrained that was countered by higher loading of the knee (p = .046). Trainers showed lower knee (p = .006) and shoulder (p = .03) loading with similar L5/S1 loading as the trained participants suggesting a broader set of criteria for safe lifting. While the study population was likely biased towards a common understanding of safe lifting techniques given the conferences were for ergonomists and safety professionals, the results provided valuable insight into potential knowledge gaps, and key messaging that is being delivered and integrated into one's knowledge; a program review of lift training is recommended.

Keywords

Kinematics,Kinetics,Lifting methods,Training,