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Hum Factors. 2015 Sep;57(6):976-87. doi: 10.1177/0018720815584866. Epub 2015 May 7.

Spine Posture and Discomfort During Prolonged Simulated Driving With Self-Selected Lumbar Support Prominence.

Author information

1
University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Canada.
2
University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Canada jack.callaghan@uwaterloo.ca.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

We examined magnitude preference, subjective discomfort, and spine posture during prolonged simulated driving with a self-selected amount of lumbar support.

BACKGROUND:

The general use of lumbar supports has been associated with decreased reports of low-back pain during driving exposures; however, minimal data exist regarding occupant magnitude preference.

METHOD:

Participants chose between five discrete levels of lumbar support (0-4 cm). Time-varying postural and discomfort responses were then monitored throughout 2 hr of simulated driving.

RESULTS:

There were no significant effects of gender or time on posture. Women preferred larger amounts of support than men (3.25 cm ± 0.71 and 2.56 cm ± 0.88, respectively, p = .048). All participants exhibited significant increases (p = .003) in pelvic discomfort throughout the 2-hr trial regardless of the level of support chosen. Discomfort related to various aspects of the lumbar support increased significantly over time. Retrospectively, no participants desired a setting beyond 4 cm, and the majority of respondents indicate had they been able to change their initial selection, they would choose a setting between 2 and 3 cm.

CONCLUSION:

The results suggest that occupants would prefer increasing the excursion capability of automobile lumbar supports beyond 2 cm.

APPLICATION:

Excursion capability and adjustability of automobile lumbar supports are important features to better meet end-user preference and to reducing lumbar flexion in sitting.

KEYWORDS:

biomechanics; gender; interventions; physical ergonomics; spine; vehicle design

PMID:
25952903
DOI:
10.1177/0018720815584866
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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