Biomechanical Stressor

Last Updated: October 25, 2020

Definition - What does Biomechanical Stressor mean?

Biomechanical stressors are those internal and external forces that exert stress on the human body. Biomechanical stressors in the workplace are associated with an increased incidence of musculoskeletal disorders. Workplace biomechanical stressors may be caused by the tools, workstation, work processes, or other physical aspects of the work environment. Biomechanical stressors may also be referred to as biomechanical risk factors or ergonomic risk factors.

WorkplaceTesting explains Biomechanical Stressor

In the study of biomechanics, scientists apply the mechanical laws of physics and engineering to the operation of the human body. Biomechanical stressors are those factors identified as hurting the body. These stressors are often associated with musculoskeletal injuries in the workplace and are thus ergonomic risk factors.

Examples of biomechanical stressors in the workplace include standing in one place for extended periods of time, causing reduced circulation and muscle fatigue; looking up at an awkward angle while performing tasks, resulting in neck strain; or engaging in repetitive heavy lifting, triggering a back injury.

The most common biomechanical stressors related to musculoskeletal disorders in the workplace are awkward posture, exposure to cold temperatures, contact stress or pressure, physical exertion, repetition, static loading, and vibration. Ergonomic designs seek to reduce or eliminate these stressors to protect workers from injury and increase workers' comfort and productivity.

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