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Seated work postures for manual, visual and combined tasks

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An awkward and static work posture has been recognized as a risk factor for workrelated musculoskeletal problems. The objective of this study was to investigate some of the factors that can influence the posture adopted during work and in particular aspects of the task and how their influence is affected by work height. Three types of task were studied: a peg-hole assembly task, which was largely manual with very little visual component; a visual character identification task; and a combination of the two. Two levels of difficulty were included in each of the manual and visual elements. Postures of the head/neck, trunk and arm were recorded during performance of these tasks. The results showed that type and difficulty of task do influence the posture adopted, and that some of the postural responses (although complex) are predictable so that poor postures could be improved by adjusting task design in addition to workplace layout.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: August 1, 1999

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