Ergonomic Factors and Musculoskeletal Disorders Among Bamboo Handicraft Workers


  • Araya Vuttikun Professional nurse, Maharaj Nakorn Chiang Mai Hospital
  • Chawapornpan Chanprasit Associate Professor, Faculty of Nursing, Chiang Mai University
  • Thanee Kaewthummanukul Assistant Professor, Faculty of Nursing, Chiang Mai University


Ergonomic Factors, Musculoskeletal Disorders, Bamboo Handicraft Workers


Ergonomic factors is a significant occupational health hazard resulting in musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) among bamboo handicraft workers.  This descriptive study was aim to study ergonomic factors and musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) among 159 bamboo handicraft workers in Doi Saket district and San Kamphaeng district, Chiang Mai province.  Data were collected using the interview form and observation form of working posture.  Data analysis was performed using descriptive statistics.

The results of study showed that the study sample perceived the exposure of ergonomic factors in terms of awkward posture and repetitive posture.  These included: neck flexion 100%, body bending 98.11%, sitting on the floor or a chair without a backrest 96.86%, body twisting and prolong sitting over one hour per day 96.23%, and wrist flexion 74.84%.  Base on RULA, the study sample had risk associated with working posture at level 4 (44.02%), which requires an immediate action for improvement, and at level 3 (47.80%), which requires action as soon as possible for improvement.  The rates of musculoskeletal disorders among the study samples during the past 12 month and 7 day were 86.79% and 57.23% respectively, which was most commonly found in the lower back.

          The results of this study indicated that occupational and health nurses and other members of a multidisciplinary team should recognize the importance of risk communication concerning the posture of workers.  This is anticipated to raise awareness and reduce the occurrence of musculoskeletal disorders.  Further, an enhancement of the quality of working life should be addressed through the development of a health project to reduce risk and promote health among bamboo handicraft workers.


Download data is not yet available.


Barbe, M. F., & Barr, A. E. (2006). Inflammation and the pathophysiology of work-related musculoskeletal disorders. Brain, Behavior, and Immunity, 20(5), 423–429.

Ban San Ton Naeo Health Promoting Hospital. (2015). Summary of health development performance for the year 2014. Chiangmai: Doi Saket District Public Health Office. (In Thai)

Bhattacharya, A. (2014). Costs of occupational musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) in the United States. International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, 44(3), 448-454.

Bureau of Labor Statistics [BLS]. (2014). Nonfatal occupational injuries and illness requiring day away from work, 2013. Retrieved from

Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety [CCOHS]. (2005). Work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSDs). Retrieved from diseases/rmirsi.html

Chaichanan, P., Chanprasit, C., & Kaewthummanukul, T. (2014). Occupational health hazards and work-related illnesses and injuries among informal workers: A case study of umbrella frame workers. Nursing Journal, 41(2), 49-60. (In Thai)

Chaiklieng, S., & Homsombat, T. (2011). Ergonomic risk assessment by RULA among workers of Rom Suk broom weaving. Srinagarind Medicine Journal, 26(1), 35-40. (In Thai)

Chenggalur, S. N., Rodgers, S., & Bernard, T. (2004). Kodak’s ergonomic design for people at work (2nd ed.). New York: John Wiley and Sons.

Community Development Department, Ministry of Interior. (2004). OTOP product information.Retrieved from (In Thai)

Dianat, I., Kord, M., Yahyazade, P., Karimi, M. A., & Stedmon, A. W. (2015). Association of individual and work-related risk factors with musculoskeletal symptoms among Iranian sewing machine operators. Appiled Ergonomics, 51, 180-188.

Dunning, K. K., Davis, K. G., Cook, C., Kotowski, S. E., Hamrick, C., Jewell, G., & Lockey, J. (2010).Costs by industry and diagnosis among musculoskeletal claims in a State workers compensation system: 1999-2004. American Journal of Industrial Medicine, 53(3), 276-284.

Escorpizo, R. (2008). Understanding work productivity and its application to work-related musculoskeletal disorders. International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics, 38(3-4), 291-297.

Fernandes, F., Dantas, O., & Costa da Lima, K. (2015). The relationship between physical load and musculoskeletal complaints among Brazilian dentists. Applied Ergonomics, 47, 93-98.

Habibi, E., Zare, M., Haghi, A., Habibi, P., & Hassanzadeh, A. (2012). Assessment of physical riskfactors among artisans using occupational repetitive actions and Nordic questionnaire.International Journal of Environmental Health Engineering, 1(8), 1-6.

International Ergonomics Association [IEA]. (2000). Definition and domains of ergonomics.Retrieved from

Irving, D. B., Cook, J., Young, M. A., & Menz, H. B. (2007). Obesity and phonated foot type may increase the risk of chronic plantar heel pain: amatched case-control study. BioMed Central Musculoskeletal Disorder, 8, 41. doi:10.1186/147-247-8-41

Keawduangdee, P., Puntumetakul, R., Siritaratiwat, W., Boonprakob, Y., Wanpen, S., Rithmark, P.,& Thavornpitak, Y. (2011). The prevalence and associated factors of working posture of low back pain in the textile occupation (fishing net) in Khon Kaen province. Srinagarind Medicine Journal, 26(4), 317-324. (In Thai)

Krejcie, R., & Morgan, D. W. (1970). Determining sample size for research activities. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 30, 607-610.

Kuorinka, I., Jonsson, B., Vinterberg, H., Biering-Sorensen, F., Andersson, G., & Jorgensen, K. (1987).Standardised nordic questionnaires for the analysis of musculoskeletal symptoms, Applied Ergonomics, 18(3), 233–237.

McAtamney, L., & Corlett, E. N. (1993). RULA: A survey method for the investigation of workrelated upper limb disorder. Applied Ergonomics, 24(2), 91–99.

Ministry of Labor. (2006). Wood furniture industry. Retrieved from 09548.pdf. (In Thai)

Nejad, N. H., Choobineh, A., Rahimifard, H., Haiddri, H. R., & Tabatabaei, S. H. R. (2013).Musculoskeletal risk assessment in small furniture manufacturing workshops. International Journal of Occupational Safety and Ergonomics, 19(2), 275–284.

Nilsen, T. I. L., Holtermann, A., & Mork, P. I. (2011). Physical exercise, body mass index, and risk of chronic pain in the low back and neck/shoulders: longitudinal data from the NordTrondelag health study. American Journal of Epidemiology, 174(3), 267-273.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration. (2000). Ergonomics: The study of work. Retrieved from

Parimalam, P., Balakamakshi, K., & Ganguli, A. K. (2006). Musculoskeletal problems of woman bamboo workers in Madurai, India. Human Factors & Ergonomics Society of Australia 42nd Annual Conference, 1-6.

Peolsson, A., Marstien, E., MaNamara, T., Nolan, D., Sjaaberg, E., Peolsson, M., … O’Leary, S.(2014). Does posture of the cervical spine influence dorsal neck muscle activity when lifting. Manual Therapy, 19(1), 32-36.

Prom-Anan, P., Chanprasit, C., & Kaewthummanukul, T., (2006). Ergonomic factor and prevalencerate of musculoskeletal disorders among workers in furniture industry. Journal of health science, 15(6), 923-930. (In Thai)

Rogers, B. (2003). Occupational and environmental health nursing concept and practice.USA: Philadephia.

Social Security Office. (2014). Annual report 2013 compensation fund. Retrieved from http://www.sso. (In Thai)

Social Security Office. (2015). Compensation fund statistics 2015. Retrieved from (In Thai)

Soytas, U. (2006). Physical and ergonomic hazards in the textile, chemical, food, metal products,and woodworking industries in Turkey. International Journal of Occupational Environment and Health, 12(1), 35-41.

Sukdee, C., Chanprasit, C., & Songkham, W. (2010). Health status and health protective behaviors among wooden furniture workers in small and medium sized. Thai Journal of Nursing Council, 25(3), 121-139. (In Thai)

Teeratarinphong, J., & Suthakorn, W. (2014). Prevalence of musculoskeletal disorders and working postures among bamboo basket weavers. Journal of Public Health, 44(3), 273-287.(In Thai)

Walsh, N. E., Brooks, P., Hazes, J. M., Walsh, R. M., Dreinhofer, K., Woolf, A. D., … Lidgren, L. (2008). Standards of care for acute and chronic musculoskeletal pain: The bone and joint decade (2000-2010). Archives of Physical Medicine Rehabilitation, 89(9), 1830-1845.





Research Article