Lower limbs: Information for employers
LLDs are a major cause of sickness absence. By managing the risks, you can reduce the number of people taking sickness absence and also the average length of each absence.
Check MSD - Risk assessment
Because most injuries happen as a result of overuse, the most effective way to reduce risk is to design work to avoid overuse. This can be done by, for example:
- providing mechanical aids;
- using staff rotation to lessen the time spent carrying out 'risky' tasks;
- using regular breaks;
- providing seating, where possible.
Speak to the people carrying out these tasks – they understand what causes them problems. More effective results 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.
- Manual handling at work: A brief guide
- Managing upper limb disorders in the workplace
- Manual handling assessment charts
- Risk assessment of pushing and pulling (RAPP) tool
- Making the best use of lifting and handling aids