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Effect of foot movement and an elastic lumbar back support on spinal loading during free-dynamic symmetric and asymmetric lifting exertions

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Abstract:

The aim of this study was to assess the effect of an elastic lumbar back support on spinal loading and trunk, hip and knee kinematics while allowing subjects to move their feet during lifting exertions. Predicted spinal forces and moments about the L5/S1 intervertebral disc from a three-dimensional EMG-assisted biomechanical model, trunk position, velocities and accelerations, and hip and knee angles were evaluated as a function of wearing an elastic lumbar back support, while lifting two different box weights (13.6 and 22.7 kg) from two different heights (knee and 10 cm above knee height), and from two different asymmetries at the start of the lift (sagittally symmetric and 60 asymmetry). Subjects were allowed to lift using any lifting style they preferred, and were allowed to move their feet during the lifting exertion. Wearing a lumbar back support resulted in no significant differences for any measure of spinal loading as compared with the no-back support condition. However, wearing a lumbar back support resulted in a modest but significant decrease in the maximum sagittal flexion angle (36.5 to 32.7), as well as reduction in the sagittal trunk extension velocity (47.2 to 40.2 s-1). Thus, the use of the elastic lumbar back support provided no protective effect regarding spinal loading when individuals were allowed to move their feet during a lifting exertion.

Keywords: BIOMECHANICAL; LIFTING BELT; LUMBAR BACK SUPPORT; MODELLING; SPINAL LOADING

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/001401300184314

Publication date: May 1, 2000

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