A comparative study of two shovel designs

A. Degani, S. S. Asfour, S. M. Waly, J. G. Koshy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


In the present study a modified shovel design with two perpendicular shafts is presented. This modified, two-shaft shovel was compared with a regular shovel. The modified shovel was evaluated and tested in a controlled laboratory environment using surface electromyography recorded from the lumbar paraspinal muscles. The new shovel design was also tested in a field study using ratings of perceived exertion. The results indicate that there was a significant reduction in EMG values of the lumbar paraspinal muscles and a consistent reduction in perceived exertion ratings while the modified shovel was being used for removing dirt in digging trenches up to 90 cm in depth.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)306-312
Number of pages7
JournalApplied Ergonomics
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 1993


  • field study
  • hand tools
  • musculoskeletal disorders
  • Shovels
  • surface electromyography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Human Factors and Ergonomics


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