Trunk postures and upper-body muscle activation during physically demanding wildfire suppression tasks

Neesham-Smith, Daniel, Aisbett, Brad and Netto, Kevin 2014, Trunk postures and upper-body muscle activation during physically demanding wildfire suppression tasks, Ergonomics, vol. 57, no. 1, pp. 86-92, doi: 10.1080/00140139.2013.862308.

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Title Trunk postures and upper-body muscle activation during physically demanding wildfire suppression tasks
Author(s) Neesham-Smith, Daniel
Aisbett, BradORCID iD for Aisbett, Brad orcid.org/0000-0001-8077-0272
Netto, Kevin
Journal name Ergonomics
Volume number 57
Issue number 1
Start page 86
End page 92
Total pages 7
Publisher Taylor & Francis
Place of publication Abigndon, Eng.
Publication date 2014
ISSN 0014-0139
1366-5847
Keyword(s) Wildfire
Electromyography
Posture
Summary This study examined the trunk postures and upper-body muscle activations during four physically demanding wildfire suppression tasks. Bilateral, wireless surface electromyography was recorded from the trapezius and erector spinae muscles of nine experienced, wildfire fighters. Synchronised video captured two retroreflective markers to allow for quantification of two-dimensional sagittal trunk flexion. In all tasks, significantly longer time was spent in the mild and severe trunk flexion (p ≤ 0.002) compared to the time spent in a neutral posture. Mean and peak muscle activation in all tasks exceeded previously established safe limits. These activation levels also significantly increased through the performance of each task (p < 0.001). The results suggest that the wildfire suppression tasks analysed impose significant musculoskeletal demand on firefighters. Fire agencies should consider developing interventions to reduce the exposure of their personnel to these potentially injurious musculoskeletal demands.
Language eng
DOI 10.1080/00140139.2013.862308
Field of Research 110601 Biomechanics
Socio Economic Objective 920505 Occupational Health
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2013, Taylor & Francis
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30060286

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences
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