Development and Evaluation of the Neck Supporter for Preventing Neck-related MSDs Kong, Yong-Ku; Han, Jun-Goo;
Many WMSDs(work-related-musculoskeletal disorders) have been reported in diverse industries and have also attracted much attention in recent years. Neck-related MSD is generally known as one of common WMSDs, especially it happens to workers who are working at the automobile assembly plants and/or shipyards. The awkward posture is considered as a main cause of neck-related MSDs. A neck supporter was developed to prevent neck-related MSDs, and 10 males were recruited to evaluate the newly developed neck supporter by measuring subjective discomfort ratings of whole body, shoulder, neck and neck-muscle activities. Muscle activities from four neck muscle groups(left/right sternocleidomastoid and upper/middle trapezius) were measured while simulating an automobile assembly task. Results showed that the neck supporter help to significantly improve subjective discomfort for whole-body, shoulder as well as neck body parts. The analyses of muscular activities also showed that the activities of left/right sternocleidomastoid muscles were statistically decreased with the neck supporter in this study. The muscle activities of upper/middle trapezius in case of wearing the neck supporter were not significantly different with the muscle activities in case of no-wearing the neck supporter. Overall findings verified that the neck supporter might help to prevent neck-related MSDs based on the current study.
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