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Body Mechanics• It is the term used to describe the efficient, coordinated, and safe use of the body to move objects and carry out the activities of daily living.
Purposes1. To prevent physical injury of the healthcare giver and the client2. To promote correct body alignment3. To facilitate coordinated, efficient muscle use when moving client4. To conserve energy of nurse for accomplishing other tasks
• Balance depends on the interrelationship of: – Center of gravity – Line of gravity – Base of support• The closer the line of gravity is to the center of the base of support, the greater the person’s stability.• The broader the base of support and the lower the center of gravity, the greater the stability and balance.
• Body balance can be greatly enhanced by: – Widening the base of support e.g. spreading the feet farther apart – Lowering the center of gravity, bringing it closer to the base of support e.g. flexing the hips and knees until a squatting position is achieved
• 2 movements to avoid because of their potential for causing back injury – Twisting (rotation) of the thoracolumbar spine – Acute flexion of the back with hips and knees straight (stooping)
Lifting• Hold the lifted object as close as possible to the body’s center of gravity• Use a lever (arms) to lift more weight• Use major muscle groups of the thighs, knees, upper and lower arms, abdomen, and pelvis to prevent back strain• Flex the back and knees until the load is at thigh level at which point the knees remain flexed to provide thrust as the back begins to straighten• Remain a distance of at least 30 cm (12 in.) between the feet and to keep the load close to the body
Pulling and Pushing• When pushing: – Enlarge the base of support by moving the front foot forward• When pulling: – Moving the rear leg back if the person is facing the object – Moving the front foot forward if the person is facing away from the object
Pivoting• It is a technique in which the body is turned in a way that avoids twisting of the spine.• Place one foot ahead of the other, raise the heels very slightly, and put the body weight on the balls of the feet.• When the weight is off the heels, the frictional surface is decreased and the knees are not twisted when turning.• Keeping the body aligned, turn (pivot) about 90degrees in the desired direction. The foot that was forward will now be behind.
• Pls see Table 42-4 Summary of Guidelines and Principles Related to Body Mechanics
ImplementationAction Rationale1. Keep weight balance above It provides greater stability.base of support.2. Enlarge base of support as Balance is maintained withnecessary. minimal effort when the base of support is enlarged in the direction in which the movement will occur.
ImplementationAction Rationale3. Lower the center of gravity The closer the line or gravity totoward base of support as center of the base of support,necessary. the greater the stability.4. Enlarge base of support in The wider the base of supportdirection in which force is to be and the lower the center ofapplied. gravity, the greater the stability.
ImplementationAction Rationale5. Tighten abdominal and The greater the preparatorygluteal muscle in preparation isometric tensing, orfor all gravities. contraction of muscle, before moving an object, the less energy is required to move it, and the less likelihood of musculoskeletal strain and injury
ImplementationAction Rationale6. Face the direction of the task This is done for effective use ofand turn body into one place. major muscle groups when the spine is rotated or twisted.7. Bend hips and knees (rather The wider the base of supportthan back) when lifting. and the lower the center of gravity, the greater the stability.
ImplementationAction Rationale8. Move objects on level It prevents unnecessary use ofsurfaces when possible. back muscle when performing a task.9. Slide (rather than lift) objects Less friction between theon a smooth surfaces when object moved and the surfacepossible. on which it is moved requires less energy.
ImplementationAction Rationale10. Hold objects close to body The face is minimized. Tenand stand close to objects be pounds held at waist heightmoved. close to body is equal to 100 lbs held at arm’s length.11. Use body weight to assist in Body weight adds face tolifting or moving when counter act the weight ofpossible. object and reduces the amount of strain on the arms and back.
ImplementationAction Rationale12. Use smooth motions and The synchronized use of asreasonable speed when many large muscle groups ascarrying out task. possible during an activity increases overall strength and prevents muscle fatigue and injury.
ImplementationAction Rationale13. When moving client, use a Pulling creates less friction thanpulling motion whenever pushing.possible.14. Raise the working surface Objects that are close to theto your waist level when center of gravity moves withpossible. less effort.