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Evaluation of Students’ Working Postures in School Workshop
Adila Md Hashim, Siti Zawiah Md Dawal
Pages - 25 - 32     |    Revised - 05-04-2013     |    Published - 30-04-2013
Volume - 3   Issue - 1    |    Publication Date - April 2013  Table of Contents
School Workshop, RULA, REBA, Working Posture, Student
Awkward postures are one of the major causes of musculoskeletal problems to be prevented at an early stage. Tackling this problem at the initial stage in schools would be of great importance. Tasks should be designed to avoid strain and damage to any part of the body such as the tendons, muscles, ligaments, and especially the back. Musculoskeletal disorder and back pain problems in adults was partly contributed by having such symptoms in their childhood. It is important to understand the symptoms of low back pain in children and design early interventions to prevent chronic symptoms that they may experience when they are adults. Musculoskeletal disorder and back pain problems in children and adolescent may give great implications in future workforce. The objective of this study was to compare working postures among students 13 to 15 years old while performing tasks in school workshop, therefore problems of musculoskeletal pain among students can be identified. Ergonomic assessments used for this study were the RULA and REBA methods. This cross-sectional study was conducted at a secondary school in Malaysia. Ninety-three working postures were evaluated to find out the posture risk level. Analysis result showed the average score are 4.87 and 5.87 for RULA and REBA methods respectively, which indicate medium risk and need for further action. The results also informed that 13-year old students had higher scores for both methods. Comparison using Kruskal-Wallis rank test showed there were significant differences among age groups for both scores and action levels. 13-year old students have the highest mean rank indicating bigger potential risks of awkward postures. In conclusion, both methods proved the workstation is mismatched for students’ body size especially for younger students. An ergonomic intervention is needed to improve students’ working posture, work performance and level of comfort.
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Mr. Adila Md Hashim
Department of Engineering Design and Manufacture Engineering Faculty, University of Malaya Kuala Lumpur, 50603 - Malaysia
Associate Professor Siti Zawiah Md Dawal
Associate Professor, Centre of Product Design and M anufacture (CPDM) Department of Engineering Design and Manufacture Engineering Faculty, University of Malaya Kuala Lumpur, 50603 - Malaysia

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