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Sex differences in muscular load among house painters performing identical work tasks

Meyland, Jacob; Heilskov-Hansen, Thomas; Alkjaer, Tine; Koblauch, Henrik; Mikkelsen, Sigurd; Svendsen, Susanne Wulff; Thomsen, Jane Frolund; Hansson, Gert-Åke LU and Simonsen, Erik B. (2014) In European Journal of Applied Physiology 114(9). p.1901-1911
Abstract
The present study aimed to estimate possible differences in upper body muscular load between male and female house painters performing identical work tasks. Sex-related differences in muscular load may help explain why women, in general, have more musculoskeletal complaints than men. In a laboratory setting, 16 male and 16 female house painters performed nine standardised work tasks common to house painters. Unilateral electromyography (EMG) recordings were obtained from the supraspinatus muscle by intramuscular electrodes and from the trapezius, extensor and flexor carpi radialis muscles by surface electrodes. Relative muscular loads in %EMG(max) as well as exerted force in Newton, based on ramp calibrations, were assessed. Sex... (More)
The present study aimed to estimate possible differences in upper body muscular load between male and female house painters performing identical work tasks. Sex-related differences in muscular load may help explain why women, in general, have more musculoskeletal complaints than men. In a laboratory setting, 16 male and 16 female house painters performed nine standardised work tasks common to house painters. Unilateral electromyography (EMG) recordings were obtained from the supraspinatus muscle by intramuscular electrodes and from the trapezius, extensor and flexor carpi radialis muscles by surface electrodes. Relative muscular loads in %EMG(max) as well as exerted force in Newton, based on ramp calibrations, were assessed. Sex differences were tested using a mixed model approach. Women worked at about 50 % higher relative muscular loads than men in the supraspinatus and forearm muscles at all percentiles and in all tasks. Women exerted about 30 % less force in the trapezius muscle at the 50th percentile. Female house painters had a higher relative muscular load than their male colleagues without exerting more force. The effects of a higher relative muscular load accumulated over years of work may in part explain why musculoskeletal complaints in the upper body occur more frequently among women than men. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Electromyography, EMG, Surface EMG, Intramuscular EMG, Force, Upper, extremity, Musculoskeletal complaints, Occupational medicine
in
European Journal of Applied Physiology
volume
114
issue
9
pages
1901 - 1911
publisher
Springer
external identifiers
  • wos:000340555800012
  • scopus:85027950180
ISSN
1439-6327
DOI
10.1007/s00421-014-2918-6
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
29f299eb-e5a5-4b7e-aa59-882bea9f9266 (old id 4656208)
date added to LUP
2014-10-01 07:26:05
date last changed
2017-10-01 03:19:17
@article{29f299eb-e5a5-4b7e-aa59-882bea9f9266,
  abstract     = {The present study aimed to estimate possible differences in upper body muscular load between male and female house painters performing identical work tasks. Sex-related differences in muscular load may help explain why women, in general, have more musculoskeletal complaints than men. In a laboratory setting, 16 male and 16 female house painters performed nine standardised work tasks common to house painters. Unilateral electromyography (EMG) recordings were obtained from the supraspinatus muscle by intramuscular electrodes and from the trapezius, extensor and flexor carpi radialis muscles by surface electrodes. Relative muscular loads in %EMG(max) as well as exerted force in Newton, based on ramp calibrations, were assessed. Sex differences were tested using a mixed model approach. Women worked at about 50 % higher relative muscular loads than men in the supraspinatus and forearm muscles at all percentiles and in all tasks. Women exerted about 30 % less force in the trapezius muscle at the 50th percentile. Female house painters had a higher relative muscular load than their male colleagues without exerting more force. The effects of a higher relative muscular load accumulated over years of work may in part explain why musculoskeletal complaints in the upper body occur more frequently among women than men.},
  author       = {Meyland, Jacob and Heilskov-Hansen, Thomas and Alkjaer, Tine and Koblauch, Henrik and Mikkelsen, Sigurd and Svendsen, Susanne Wulff and Thomsen, Jane Frolund and Hansson, Gert-Åke and Simonsen, Erik B.},
  issn         = {1439-6327},
  keyword      = {Electromyography,EMG,Surface EMG,Intramuscular EMG,Force,Upper,extremity,Musculoskeletal complaints,Occupational medicine},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {9},
  pages        = {1901--1911},
  publisher    = {Springer},
  series       = {European Journal of Applied Physiology},
  title        = {Sex differences in muscular load among house painters performing identical work tasks},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00421-014-2918-6},
  volume       = {114},
  year         = {2014},
}