Falls are a leading cause of fatal and nonfatal injuries in the construction trades. This study explored construction workers' self-reports of postural stability upon standing after working in different postures. One hundred and eighty-nine workers in 10 construction trades provided stability ratings by completing a written questionnaire. Additional data collected included age, gender, years of experience, and rating of overall balance. Construction workers rated their overall balance as high, furthermore, no difference was found between trades or age groups. Significant differences in stability ratings were provided for the various postures. The most commonly used non-erect postures (bent over at waist, squatting, and forward kneeling) resulted in the largest self-reports of instability. Sitting on elevated surface and sitting on level surface resulted in the highest levels of self-reported stability and are recommended when maintaining balance is a concern. Differences associated with construction trade and age were also found, but were thought to be attributed to differences in tasks performed since no differences were found when each posture was analyzed separately. The results suggest that the working posture used to complete a task affects the postural stability upon standing regardless of construction trade and age of worker. Findings may lead to recommendations for redesign of tasks or tools to reduce the use of certain working postures, particularly in high-risk environments such as construction.
- Postural stability
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
- Safety Research
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health