Grip strength and ‘Activities of Daily Living’ – PhD; Rahayu

Rahayu profile

Over the last two years Rahayu has been studying a full-time PhD at Sheffield Hallam University, undertaking studies into hand discomfort experienced whilst performing activities of daily living (ADL’s). From initial survey work on these ADL’s, cleaning activities such as hoovering, wiping and so on were seen to rate highly by pain discomfort and pain frequency when compared to other activities. So she decided to study the nature of these cleaning activities in more detail to gain a greater understanding of why this was the case.

Rahayu and her mopping and hoovering Activities of daily living
These studies have been largely in two parts, laboratory studies using motion capture and force sensors to study the activity in detail and analysing cleaners at work in a professional environment. As part of her work studying and analysing cleaners at work in a professional environment, she decided to take a part-time job as a cleaner with a major employer within Sheffield. The initial aim of taking this job was to understand some of the issues faced by cleaners whilst undertaking their normal tasks. Rahayu has kept a diary of her experiences and wrote in the first person. The work has progressed with Rahayu speaking a two major international ergonomics conferences, a number of peer reviewed journal papers and her diary work is currently under review for publication at a major design conference. The importance of this work can be demonstrated from her diary:
‘…After 6 months, the back pain becomes more serious. I felt discomfort while doing the hoovering, mopping, carrying and washing up. I take time off for 2 weeks after consulting a doctor. She suggests to me that I take a rest. All my pains heal after resting for 2 weeks…’

Project updates

Lab4Living, Sheffield Hallam University,
Furnival Building, 153 Arundel Street, Sheffield, S1 2NU
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