The Assessment of Knowledge and Application of Proper Body Mechanics in the Workplace

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Back pain is the most expensive industrial injury. Representatives at DeRoyal, a manufacturer of orthopaedic soft goods, believed a total back hygiene program that included aggressive training in body mechanics would reduce the cost associated with back injury. Prior to implementing a back educational program, the knowledge base of employees was assessed. A survey designed to measure knowledge and application of proper body mechanics was developed and distributed to 100 randomly selected workers. Most workers know the best way to lift. But, they had less knowledge of the best way to push. They also did not always use proper technique in lifting without twisting, planning lifts, and proper standing. A subset of workers that has previously attended back training sessions (n = 6) all gave the correct answers on 4 of the 5 survey items. Orthopaedic nurses could play a critical role in the industrial setting through assessment of body mechanic knowledge and implementation of educational programs

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