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Manufacturing Innovative Matting Products
Manufacturing Innovative Matting Products

Prof. Redha Taiar Workshop On Anti-Fatigue

~Presents findings and recommendations on reducing fatigue in the work place~

Prof. Dr. Redha Taiar, an expert in biomechanical, human locomotion, kinematic and kinetic analysis and biomedical technologies at the University of Reims in France, will be presenting two workshops on fatigue in the workplace at the Expo Protection in Paris in December 2012.

Professor Redha Taiar of the University of Reims

The basis for these workshops is his recent study (2011) on “Human Mechanics in a Working Environment”. Studying the upright position of the human body, the adjusting of its segments to maintain its balance and diminishing muscular problems are the main elements to highlight in order to improve the everyday (working) life of users.

By observing workers and measuring foot pressure for employees standing for long periods, Prof. Taiar was able to identify two causes of fatigue and therefore a two-pronged approach in combating the muscular-skeletal disorders associated with long-term standing.

One cause of fatigue: the Cinderella Fibres

The consequences of long term standing on a muscular-skeletal level begin with training muscles. For the human body to remain in an upright position, namely standing, we have trained our muscles in what becomes an automatic system. Basically this posture state (upright) is engrained in our neuromuscular program, and each time we use the same muscles to do the work, without us being conscience about this. This ‘automated’ muscular functioning is recorded in the brain and will be systematically applied.
The muscular fibres involved in this programming are also called « Cinderella fibres », because even if they are tired they do their job …that’s the start of muscular-skeletal troubles (pain, contractures, tendinitis…).Professor Redha Taiar study on Anti-Fatigue Matting

Another cause of fatigue: imbalance

In addition to overuse of the same muscles, when the system is out of balance, the muscles must work harder to search for balance and the quick reaction speed is maintained at the cost of energy (fatigue).
So to maintain an upright position it is necessary to have a well-adapted postural balance to decrease pathologies and their consequences in the everyday work of the users. In a nutshell, to regain balance ‘quick reaction /energy saving/ effectiveness’ it is necessary to become aware of the different foot pressures on the ground and the most proper muscle action (from head to toe).

Two causes: two-part solution to fight fatigue

Taiar therefore recommends a two-part approach in reducing fatigue.
Firstly, the worker must initiate a variation in foot pressure to improve the upright standing position. This top down approach helps to eliminate the build-up of pressure points on the feet (Cinderella fibres). To achieve this, his advice to workers is to regularly change the pressure point inside the shoe.
Secondly, by using anti-fatigue mats made from the latest technological materials. This bottom up approach helps to eliminate pressure points from the floor by spreading weight evenly. The use of anti-fatigue mats correct balance and restore uniform distribution between the right and left leg.
The unique composition of anti-fatigue matting is an ergonomic pattern and a cushioning underlay which evenly distributes weight and stimulates continuous micro-movements of the feet minimizing blood pooling in the legs. Prof. Taiar’s findings confirmed that pains are substantially reduced with the use of anti-fatigue mats compared to the initial situation without mats.

Workers agree

Feedback from employees was also used to support the research using observations from workers who compared working on anti-fatigue mats to working on the hard floor and noting their level of comfort and fatigue every hour during eight-hour shifts. One worker commented: “Less fatigue in the legs at the end of the day and less muscular and articular troubles, better absorption of weight.”

Anti-fatigue mats come in various types and materials for industrial or commercial applications that require additional benefits such as anti-slip, oil resistant, fire retardant, chemical resistant, static dissipative, or anti-microbial. Notrax® is a leading brand of anti-fatigue matting that was specifically tested by Prof. Dr. Taiar and shown to significantly reduce symptoms of fatigue.

More information on the Taiar Research on Anti-Fatigue Matting

Prof. Dr. Redha Taiar will host two workshops at the Expo Protection safety show that takes place in Paris from 5 - 8 December 2012 to discuss his research on anti-fatigue mats and share his knowledge on ergonomics. For more information or to sign up in advance for the workshop, please send an email to europe@notrax.com.
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Prof. Dr. Redha Taiar is an expert in biomechanical, human locomotion, kinematic and kinetic analysis and biomedical technologies at the University of Reims in France. For more details about his work: www.redha-taiar.com.

Learn more about Professor Taiar's Research: Standing Smart