Assessment of the deployment of a hammer device in mine rescue training from a biomechanical point of view relative to strain on the lumbar vertebral column

Project No. BG01 #024


completed 08/1997


Regular mine rescue training includes 3x60 blows with the hammer device ("paving breaker"), i.e. pulling a load downwards from above head height and pressing this to the floor. A large number of mine rescue personnel expressed discomfort in the area of the lumbar vertebral column after carrying out these exercises. Goal: biomechanical assessment of the strain on the lumbar vertebral column as a result of performing exercises with the hammer device.


Evaluation of video recordings of two experimentees together with simultaneously measured and recorded dynamic forces; determining spinal strain with the "Dortmunder System" taking into account the weight of the breathing apparatus carried on the back during the exercises.


The exercise with the hammer device is regarded as a limit exercise and under no circumstances as harmless, i.e. as possibly injury-inducing. This applies in particular for older people. Recommendation that the exercise with the hammer device be abandoned.

Last Update:

15 Aug 2000


Financed by:
  • Bergbau-Berufsgenossenschaft
Research institution(s):
  • Institut für Arbeitsphysiologie
  • Dortmund


Type of hazard:

Handhabung von Lasten, Qualifizierung/Aus- und Weiterbildung


Messverfahren, Ergonomie, Gefährdungsbeurteilung

Description, key words:

Rescue services, personnel, weight training, spine, danger