Set 072015

Mercoledì 9 Settembre ore 10
Auditorium Laboratori Ingegneria Blocco L
Cittadella Universitaria di Monserrato

Better measurements for better interventions: research technology in occupational biomechanics at McGill University

ABSTRACT: Work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSDs) affect a large portion of workers in industrialized societies. Some risk factors such as fatigue and poor work posture have been identified; however, unfortunately, interventions to reduce the incidence of WMSDs are generally ineffective. This could be due to a poor understanding of the WMSDs injury mechanisms, as well as ineffective tools to precisely measure the exposures leading to the injury onset. The goal of this lecture is to provide an overview of the WMSD exposure measurement technologies and to provide examples of how tools like accelerometers and electromyographical systems can be used to address occupational health problems. Examples will be drawn from the ongoing research in the Occupational Biomechanics and Ergonomics Laboratory of McGill University.

Lunedì 14 Settembre ore 10
Auditorium Laboratori Ingegneria Blocco L
Cittadella Universitaria di Monserrato

Human posture: from fundamental postural control studies to workplace interventions

ABSTRACT: Humans are able to maintain erect posture with seemingly little effort, and previous research has advanced our understanding of how we can control the quiet standing and seated postures. However, the coordination of posture and upper limb movements is required in many everyday tasks such as during repetitive upper limb work, and much less is known about how both posture and movement can be coordinated together. Our lab has conducted several studies investigating posture and repetitive upper limb movement coordination in normal conditions, when experiencing neck/shoulder fatigue or pain, and when posture was challenged (by added trunk weight, by suddenly moving the floor), providing results that together can help better understand human motor control. The ability to coordinate posture and upper limb movements also has practical relevance to workplace health. In recent years, ergonomists have begun to manipulate the work posture in attempts to alleviate some work-related health problems. For example, modified computer workstations such as standing, sit-standing and walking, have begun to infiltrate the workplace, however little quantitative evidence has been gathered to confirm their hypothetical benefits on health, especially in regards to a change to musculoskeletal disorder risk factors. Our lab has recently begun a line of studies to quantify the effects of alternative work postures on neck/shoulder muscular, vascular and discomfort as well as overall work performance outcomes. These results, and associated ergonomic recommendations, will be presented.

Martedì 15 Settembre ore 10
Auditorium Laboratori Ingegneria Blocco L
Cittadella Universitaria di Monserrato

Muscle fatigue: theory, measurement, and consequences.

ABSTRACT: In high-intensity activities such as during sport, muscle fatigue manifests by a decline in force output. In low-force tasks such as those performed in a sustained or repetitive fashion during a work day (i.e. the focus of this presentation), fatigue is rather an ongoing process, associated with an increased sense of effort and a reduction in force generating capacity. In addition, during low-force fatigue, body regions other than those directly experiencing fatigue undergo changes that may be consequences of the decreased function of the fatigued muscles. Our lab has conducted several studies focusing on various aspects of the low-force fatigue phenomenon, to gain a better understanding of how the human body deals with fatigue. This presentation will start with classical definitions and concepts of fatigue and how it can be measured in the lab and in the workplace, and will introduce the recent literature on the interplay between fatigue and motor control.

credits | accessibilità Università degli Studi di Cagliari
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