MSD Risk Factors

Research indicates that chronic disease and declining physical fitness are the primary risk factors for injuries and MSDs. Work demands and job tasks also contribute. Let’s not forget stress in general, one of the biggest risk factors of all, which surrounds all of us both at home and at work!

A comprehensive, “whole person” strategy is necessary for effective MSD Injury Prevention because a variety of risk factors are involved. Some risk factors are the responsibility of the workplace, while others are the responsibility of the worker.

Following are some of the many risk factors at play with today’s workforce:

  • Force

  • Repetition

  • Work postures

  • Local contact stress

  • Work loads

  • Worker capacity

  • Preexisting conditions

  • Standing for long periods of time

  • Sitting for long periods of time

  • Spinal anomalies

  • Sedentary lifestyles

  • Lack of sleep

  • Lack of exercise

  • Poor nutrition

  • Poor hydration

  • Poor core conditioning

  • Obesity

  • Age

  • Caffeine consumption

  • Lack of education/knowledge

  • Lifting, pulling, pushing, and carrying objects

  • Previously injured employees

  • Poorly designed equipment

  • Poorly designed work stations

  • Poorly designed vehicles

  • Temperature

  • Vibration

  • Overexertion

  • Poor matching of employee to task or equipment

  • Lack of job rotation

  • Lack of recovery time

  • Poor supervision

  • Low culture climate

  • Poor supervision

  • Poor communications

  • Perceptions and habits

These risk factors add substantial gravity for the necessity of providing effective MSD injury and illness training. In the case of MSD risk, it is not a question of which one of these risk factors affects your workforce, but more importantly, “how many of these risk factors exist in your company today, (or will exist tomorrow), if adequate prevention-based solutions are not put into place?” In our opinion, the sooner the better for risk reduction, why wait?

To help reduce risk factors in your organization, Accurate Ergonomics stands ready to assist. Our experts know how to recognize risk by following a structured process, so that just the right strategies and countermeasures are put into place. Our training system also teaches risk recognition to employees and their respective leaders.

Call now to speak with an Accurate Ergonomics expert: 866-950-ERGO (3746), or email us at

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