A weblog dedicated to Ergonomics education, dicussion and debate. This emerging field has the power to transform industry, business and the lives of ordinary people for the better. The Industrial Athlete intends to encourage and document our profession's vision of an ergonomically-friendly future!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Proper Tool Usage: Heights, Surfaces, and Tool Types

After focusing on precision and power grips during the last two Spotlights, it feels only natural to dedicate the next few posts on how to properly use hand tools in varying circumstances; this post will focus on varying surfaces and heights. Depending on the intended usage, grips that make ergonomic sense in some applications may put the user in an awkward position in another application. For example, using a power drill that has a pistol-grip setup makes sense when working on a wall but it causes extreme wrist flexion if you attempt to use it on a high horizontal surface, such as a table.


- Using inline-handled tools on vertical surfaces, such as walls.

- Using inline-handled tools on horizontal surfaces, such as tables, when the surface is below elbow height.

- Using pistol-grip tools on horizontal surfaces above waist height.

- Using pistol-grip tools at any height other than elbow height, when working on vertical surfaces.


- Use inline tools on horizontal surfaces at elbow height.

- Use pistol-grip tools on vertical surfaces at elbow height.

- Use pistol-grip tools on horizontal surfaces below waist height.


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