The present study is based on previous research on the poor body posture of surgeons and their experienced discomfort during surgical procedures. Since surgeons have head-bent and back-bent posture during open surgical procedures, a chest support is a viable supporting principle. This support is meant to reduce lower back pain by minimising lower back muscle activity. The aim of this study is to investigate the impact of a chest support on lower back muscle activity during forward bending and to establish a possible relation between supporting force and the kind of balancing strategy a person adopts. Use of the chest support shows a significant reduction of muscle activity in the lower back and leg muscles. Within the participants three user groups are identified as "sceptical users", "non-trusters" and "fully trusters", each following a different balancing strategy. Since there are different kinds of users, the designed body support should offer the possibility for altering the posture and should not constrain the user to take a certain body posture.

Balancing strategy, Biomechanics, Chest support, Electromyography,
Applied Bionics and Biomechanics
Department of Surgery

Albayrak, A, Goossens, R.H.M, Snijders, C.J, de Ridder, H, & Kazemier, G. (2010). Impact of a chest support on lower back muscles activity during forward bending. Applied Bionics and Biomechanics, 7(2), 131–142. doi:10.1080/11762320903541453