Muscle strength and aerobic capacity in a representative sample of employees with and without repetitive monotonous work
Objectives The purpose of the study was to determine a possible association between the type of work individuals perform and his or her physical capacity. There was focus on whether workers performing repetitive monotonous work differ from workers with varied work tasks with respect to the physical capacity. Methods: Maximal backward extension and forward flexion torques of the trunk, maximal shoulder elevation and abduction torques, handgrip strength and aerobic capacity were measured on 423 (213 male and 210 female) Danish employees with a mean age of 40 years. Half of the group had varied work and the other half had repetitive monotonous work. Results: The main finding was that there is no difference in the measured physical capacities between employees with repetitive monotonous work and those compared with workers with varied work tasks. Conclusions: No difference in the physical capacities measured in the two groups of employees was found. Reasons for this are discussed.