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How an Automated Holistic Solution Using Wearable Technology Reduces MSD Injury Risk
Date:9/11/2019

Workplace injuries cost individuals, organisations and society. Safety science is ever-evolving, although many industries have struggled to solve injury risks which lead to musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).

Starting with the individual and spreading to the organisation, the wearable technology solution developed by the team at Soter Analytics helps avoid ergonomic injury by coaching workers to self-correct their movements in real-time.

Amy Hope, Principle Ergonomist at Soter Analytics, says “The report provides insight and clearly outlines how the SoterSpine product can automate the ergonomics process.” Soter provides the holistic solution to assess workplace organisation, to evaluate biomechanical risks of tasks, provide insight on organizational risks, and to train the individual with a minimally invasive program.

Matthew Hart, CEO and founder explains, "By gaining unbiased objective insight to an individual’s movement, Soter Analytics are able to easily identify particular areas of strain to the worker utilising key data collected by the wearable. This can then be used to improve processes and procedures in the manual handling arena."

The report addresses the risks in all categories from the individual, the task and the work environment and simplifies the implementation process to keep track, continue to be proactive and motivate workers. The same level of insight and progression towards improvement has typically been triggered by an injury and/or extensive observation and subjective tools which are resource intensive (time and cost) and synthetic.

The paper also challenges traditional manual handling standards that are based on statistical averages and anthropometric data which do not withstand the immense population variety observed in today’s society. It discusses these standards that specify what ‘typical’ humans can withstand and gives insight into the 3 phases involved in achieving measurement on ‘how difficult movements are for individuals.’

“This is a step-change improvement from traditional standards that don’t take into account a person's inherent strength and fatigue and only estimate the measured weights that people could safely move,” says Amy Hope, Soter Analytic’s Principle Ergonomist. “Remote continuous monitoring for organisations with individualized training and personalized results for each worker sets the standards to a higher level for a safer environment and proactive injury risk program.”

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