The effects of control design and working posture on strength and work output: an isokinetic investigation

by Dirkse van Schalkwyk, C.J.

Abstract (Summary)
The objective of the present study was to assess the isokinetic, cardiovascular and psychophysical responses of young adult males (N=30) during valve turning exercises. It aimed to evaluate the variables in relation to changes in control design and working posture. Isokinetic testing and ergonomics have not been widely linked and it was an aim of this study to show the advantages to the field of ergonomics. Furthermore, the “work-simulation” package used in the present study has not been widely exploited and it was believed that this study could thus contribute significantly to the literature.

Testing was carried out using a CYBEX ® 6000 isokinetic dynamometer, a polar heart watch, an Omron M1 semi-automatic blood pressure monitor and various perceptual rating scales. Testing involved the subjects having to perform 4 maximal turning efforts in 18 different conditions. These conditions were made up by using 6 different control designs in 3 varying positions. Subjects were required to attend two sessions, each approximately one hour long, in which nine randomised conditions were tested in each session. During these sessions, isokinetic responses: peak torque (Nm), total work (J) and average power (W); cardiovascular responses: heart rate (bt.min[superscript -1]) and blood pressure (mmHg); and psychophysical responses: RPE and discomfort, were observed. The results of the tests showed that in general significant differences were encountered for isokinetic, cardiovascular and psychophysical responses in relation to changes in the control design. However, significant differences were far less evident, and in most cases non existent, in relation to changes in the spatial orientation of the control types. The essence being that operator position with respect to the control is not as crucial as the control design.

Bibliographical Information:


School:Rhodes University

School Location:South Africa

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:human kinetics ergonomics


Date of Publication:01/01/2002

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