This website uses non-intrusive cookies to improve your user experience. You can visit our cookie privacy page for more information.

Lower limbs: Information for employers

Effectively managing lower limb disorders (LLDs) can bring business benefits to your organisation.

LLDs are a major cause of sickness absence accounting for, on average, 25 days' absence per incident. By managing the risks, you can reduce the number of people taking sickness absence and also the average length of each absence.

If you do not manage the risk of LLDs to your workers, you run the risk of legal action and possible compensation costs (in addition to potentially greater staff sickness absence).

Check MSD - Risk assessment

Preventing LLDs

Because most injuries happen as a result of overuse, the most effective way to reduce risk is to design work so that overuse is avoided. This can be done by, for example:

Speak to the people carrying out these tasks – they understand what causes them problems. More effective reductions are usually achieved if employees are consulted first.

Personal protective equipment

Knee pads: These are useful for protection while kneeling on hard floor surfaces, but they do not mitigate the risks of extreme flexion of the knee. Their benefit is largely in respect of preventing lacerations and penetrating injuries, and improving comfort. It is not known whether they reduce the risk of osteoarthritis (OA).

Anti-fatigue matting: There is some evidence that anti-fatigue matting may be effective in reducing the risks from prolonged standing. However, the use of mats in the workplace requires careful consideration because of the increased risk from slips and trips.

Updated 2012-12-07