Tolerability to prolonged lifting tasks. A validation of the recommended limits.

P. Capodaglio, G. Bazzini

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Prolonged physical exertion is subjectively regulated by the perception of effort. This preliminary study was conducted to validate the use of subjective perceptions of effort in assessing objectively tolerable workloads for prolonged lifting tasks. Ten healthy male subjects tested their maximal lifting capacity (MLC) on a lift dynamometer (LidoLift, Loredan Biomed., West Sacramento, CA) and underwent incremental and 30-minute endurance lifting tests. Cardiorespiratory parameters were monitored with an oxygen uptake analyzer, mechanical parameters were calculated using a computerized dynamometer. Ratings of perceived exertion were given on Borg's 10-point scale. Physiological responses to repetitive lifting were matched with subjective perceptions. A single-variable statistical regression for power functions was performed to obtain the individual "iso-perception" curves as functions of the mechanical work exerted. We found that the "iso-perception" curve corresponding to a "moderate" perception of effort may represent the individual "tolerance threshold" for prolonged lifting tasks, since physiological responses at this level of intensity did not change significantly and the respiratory exchange ratio was less than one. The individually tolerable weight for lifting tasks lasting 30 min has been expressed as a percentage of the isoinertial MLC value and compared with the currently recommended limits for prolonged lifting tasks (Italian legislation D.L. 626/94). On the basis of our preliminary results a "tolerance threshold" of 20% MLC has been proposed for prolonged lifting tasks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)72-75
Number of pages4
JournalGiornale Italiano di Medicina del Lavoro ed Ergonomia
Volume19
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1997

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