Did you know that the risk of shoulder injury increases 3 to 5 times when doing overhead work?
Above shoulder work should be designed out of the workplace, but some situations require it, such as a mechanic working under a car.
How to Reduce Shoulder Injuries
- Perform overhead work less than 10% of the shift
- Shoulder posture of less than 60 degrees are optimal
- Decrease reaching distances
- Avoid work performed in a horizontal direction; instead overhead work in a downward direction is preferred
- Reduce the force requirement of the task
- Avoid precision work
Depending on the job, meeting all the factors listed above may not be attainable for preventing shoulder injuries. However, lowering the job demands for even one of these categories should reduce the risk of injury. Lowering the job demands for more than one of these should reduce the risk of injury even further.
Talk to your employees and contact an ergonomics professional to assess the risk of injury for overhead work in your workplace.