Let’s make physically demanding jobs sustainable: Implementing objective measures and a prospective approach.

01 November 2020 → 31 October 2022
Regional and community funding: Special Research Fund
Research disciplines
  • Medical and health sciences
    • Occupational health and safety
    • Epidemiology
Sustainable employability physical demanding jobs physical activity physical and psychosocial hazards cardiovascular musculoskeletal work ability
Project description

Even today considerable groups of workers remain exposed to high physical work demands. People with physically demanding jobs show
an increased risk for health-related problems, such as musculoskeletal and cardiovascular problems. Given our ageing workforce, employees have to work longer, which may be particularly challenging for older workers engaged in physically demanding jobs. Investigating both the physical and psychosocial work-related hazards of such jobs is highly needed to ensure sustainable employability. To pursue this aim, this project aims to tackle a number of shortcomings in the current literature on the health effects of physically demanding jobs. The project implements an innovative longitudinal research design, measures in an objective fashion main physical work-related hazards in relation to various health-related outcomes, including perceived workability, cardiovascular problems and musculoskeletal problems, and takes into consideration various potential buffering factors, such as cardiorespiratory fitness, leisuretime physical activity, psychosocial resources, and age. This project elaborates on a high-quality dataset collected in 2017/18 containing objective measures of 430 participants. The project aims to conduct both a follow-up study and an additional cross-sectional study. The project goals are to gain a better understanding of the hazards and buffering factors involved and to provide well-founded structural preventive measures at workplace level.