Authors: Wadena D Burnett, Michael Tweten, Udoka Okpalauwaekwe, Catherine Trask, Stephan Milosavljevic
Identifier: CSBE23105
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Published in: CSBE-SCGAB Technical Conferences » AGM Lethbridge 2023

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Description: Adverse effects from prolonged occupational whole-body vibration (WBV) exposure during agricultural machinery operation include alterations in proprioception, reaction time, sensory response, and decrements in musculoskeletal health. Although it may not be possible to fully eliminate WBV exposure, operators may break up extended exposure with short yet effective activity breaks. Our aim was to determine if selected activities can minimize cognitive, proprioceptive, and musculoskeletal decrements related to occupational WBV exposure in agriculture. Eleven healthy adults participated in four sessions of 1-hour of in-lab WBV exposure followed by one of four 5-minute activities: sitting, walking, 2 minutes of gaze stabilization exercise (GSE) with 3 minutes of trunk mobility exercises (GSE+MOBIL), or 2 minutes of GSE with a 3-minute walk (GSE+WALK). Baseline and post-activity measurements (musculoskeletal discomfort, balance, psychomotor vigilance test) were submitted to a paired t-test to determine the effect of activity on health outcomes. We used a repeated measures ANOVA to determine health outcome differences across activities. We observed decreases in the slowest 10% reaction speeds after walking (7.3%, p<0.05) and sitting (8.6%, p<0.05) activities. There were no differences in mean reaction time across activities, but slowest 10% reaction speed after GSE+MOBIL activity was faster than all other activities (15 to 25%, p<0.05). An activity incorporating GSE with walking or trunk mobility exercises, resulted in maintenance of reaction time after WBV exposure. If confirmed in occupational environments, GSE may provide a simple, rapid, and effective activity to help protect against decrements in reaction time after WBV exposure.

Keywords: Ergonomics, Whole-Body Vibration Exposure, Occupational Health, Human Factors Engineering, Agricultural Machinery
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Date: 2023-07-23
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Conference name: CSBE/SCGAB 2023 Annual Conference, Lethbridge, Alberta, 23-26 July 2023.
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Type: Presentation
Publication type: Text.Abstract
Coverage: North_America
Language 1: en
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Rights: Canadian Society for Bioengineering
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