03-11-2001, 04:13 PM
Does anyone know of any research that shows that rubber matting can reduce
the adverse effects of prolonged standing? If anyone is looking for a
research topic an EMG study of the effects of semi-resilient flooring on
fatigue of the leg muscles might prove interesting.

Here is some background information:

Prolonged Standing

Research shows that 20 per cent of saleswomen may be adversely affected by
prolonged (Grandjean and others, 1968). An increased incidence of varicose
veins, thrombosis and dropsy can result. A higher percentage of workers
could be affected if hard floor surfaces are present.

Australian Standard 1837-1976 gave advice on workplace design for standing
work. Handling tasks involving prolonged standing (such as those at counter
service work) for a duration of 4 hours (or more) may lead to leg pain for
some workers.

The Occupational Health and Safety (Floors, Passageways and Stairs)
Regulation 1990 states that "if persons are required to stand in the same
position on floors of brick, metal, concrete or stone (or a similar
material) then the floor (or the part where persons stand) must be covered
with a semi-resilient thermally non-conductive material".

In plain English such material might be described as "matting that provides
some cushioning and thermal insulation." In order to provide cushioning the
material should be compressible and it should not be too stiff or rigid. A
material that has a Shore hardness between 25 and 60 is likely to be
suitably semi-resilient (Cockrell, 1997). Many rubber matting materials are


1. E. Grandjean (1985), "Fitting the task to the Man", (Taylor & Francis:
London). See page 16.

2. AS 1837-1976, "Ergonomics in Factory and Office Work".

3. J. Cockrell (1997) "Selecting Anti-fatigue Mats", Occupational Health and
Safety, April 1997, page 76.

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