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The effect on workload by using a support arm in parlour milking

Stal, M; Pinzke, S and Hansson, Gert-Åke LU (2003) In International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics 32(2). p.121-132
Abstract
Swedish agriculture is currently undergoing radical changes with respect to the working environment. New production milking systems may alter the physical workload and thus have an effect on the development of musculoskeletal disorders. Earlier studies have shown that there is a manifest risk of suffering injury to the forearm, wrist and hand during machine milking especially during the attaching task (when holding the milking cluster in one hand while attaching the four teat-cups to the udder). High degrees of dorsiflexion and deviation of the wrist in combination with peak values of muscle activity in the forearm during milking might contribute injuries to the wrist and hand. Large-scale milk production increases the time spent... (More)
Swedish agriculture is currently undergoing radical changes with respect to the working environment. New production milking systems may alter the physical workload and thus have an effect on the development of musculoskeletal disorders. Earlier studies have shown that there is a manifest risk of suffering injury to the forearm, wrist and hand during machine milking especially during the attaching task (when holding the milking cluster in one hand while attaching the four teat-cups to the udder). High degrees of dorsiflexion and deviation of the wrist in combination with peak values of muscle activity in the forearm during milking might contribute injuries to the wrist and hand. Large-scale milk production increases the time spent performing the tasks involved. As a consequence, the cumulative engagement in extreme positions and rapid movements, and high level of muscular load on the upper extremities will also increase. The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of the workload on the milker's forearm, wrist and hands resulting from using the prototype of a device designed to facilitate the attaching task. The device is constructed as a support arm where the milking cluster is suspended in order to reduce the workload. The study was carried out in a loose-housing system where the cows come to be milked in a parlour. Eleven milkers participated in the study. The muscle activity in the biceps and the forearm flexors, as well as positions and movements of the wrists were measured by electromyography and electrogoniometry. The attaching task was measured both with and without the device. When the prototype was used only a minor decrease in the muscular load on the holding side was recorded. Surprisingly, the effect on the wrist positions and movements was small. This marginal effect could be due to the fact that all the milkers were used to milking without the support arm and despite the training period, they were unable to make full use of the device. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
musculoskeletal disorders, work related, upper extremities, physical workload, milking device, new, electrogoniometry, direct technical measurement, electromyography
in
International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics
volume
32
issue
2
pages
121 - 132
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • wos:000183901400006
  • scopus:0038141076
ISSN
0169-8141
DOI
10.1016/S0169-8141(03)00046-5
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
e0d56511-d0b6-4050-864f-35f8f0369a42 (old id 307219)
date added to LUP
2007-09-22 12:24:27
date last changed
2018-10-03 11:53:54
@article{e0d56511-d0b6-4050-864f-35f8f0369a42,
  abstract     = {Swedish agriculture is currently undergoing radical changes with respect to the working environment. New production milking systems may alter the physical workload and thus have an effect on the development of musculoskeletal disorders. Earlier studies have shown that there is a manifest risk of suffering injury to the forearm, wrist and hand during machine milking especially during the attaching task (when holding the milking cluster in one hand while attaching the four teat-cups to the udder). High degrees of dorsiflexion and deviation of the wrist in combination with peak values of muscle activity in the forearm during milking might contribute injuries to the wrist and hand. Large-scale milk production increases the time spent performing the tasks involved. As a consequence, the cumulative engagement in extreme positions and rapid movements, and high level of muscular load on the upper extremities will also increase. The aim of this study was to investigate the impact of the workload on the milker's forearm, wrist and hands resulting from using the prototype of a device designed to facilitate the attaching task. The device is constructed as a support arm where the milking cluster is suspended in order to reduce the workload. The study was carried out in a loose-housing system where the cows come to be milked in a parlour. Eleven milkers participated in the study. The muscle activity in the biceps and the forearm flexors, as well as positions and movements of the wrists were measured by electromyography and electrogoniometry. The attaching task was measured both with and without the device. When the prototype was used only a minor decrease in the muscular load on the holding side was recorded. Surprisingly, the effect on the wrist positions and movements was small. This marginal effect could be due to the fact that all the milkers were used to milking without the support arm and despite the training period, they were unable to make full use of the device.},
  author       = {Stal, M and Pinzke, S and Hansson, Gert-Åke},
  issn         = {0169-8141},
  keyword      = {musculoskeletal disorders,work related,upper extremities,physical workload,milking device,new,electrogoniometry,direct technical measurement,electromyography},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {2},
  pages        = {121--132},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics},
  title        = {The effect on workload by using a support arm in parlour milking},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0169-8141(03)00046-5},
  volume       = {32},
  year         = {2003},
}