Effects of glove use on grip strengths at different working postures

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Wan-alusi Saengrit1
Sirikul Amphonpongphaisan
Supapan Chaiprapat
Klangduen Pochana


Gloves are one of the most widely used personal protective equipment in industrial and agricultural work fields. However, use of gloves may affect an ability of the hand. The purpose of this research was to study the effects of glove use on grip strengths at different working postures. The study was conducted with a sample group of 40 university students (20 males and 20 females) aged 18-22 years, average height 166.74 (±9.44) cm, average weight 63.52 (±19.34) kg. The experiments were first tested with bare hands against the use of three different types of cotton yarn knitted gloves: 1) non-patterned gloves, 2) rubber-dotted gloves, and 3) fully rubber-coated gloves. Grip strength was measured using a hand dynamometer in 3 postures: straight arm (180 degrees), elbow flexion (90 degrees) and shoulder flexion (45 degrees). Dominant and non-dominant hands are measured. The study found that the average grip strength of the bare hands of both hands was higher than when using gloves. In testing the dominant hand, it was found that the highest hand grip strength was the straight arm (29.3 kg), followed by the shoulder flexion (27.9 kg) and the elbow flexion (27 kg). The dominant hand test in all positions was higher than the non-dominant hand (11.5-12.5%). In addition, straight arm extension (180 degrees) was found to have the highest hand grip strength in both bare-handed and gloved use. It is found that, compared with bare hands, different types of gloves were associated with different reduction in the grip strength: 20.6-22.2% for fully-coated gloves and 8.4-9.9% for rubber-dotted gloves.  Analyzing with the paired t-test, significant differences of resultant grip strengths were confirmed across the experimented postures and types of gloves.  However, in male samples, there was no significant statistical evidence between the grip strength of bare hands and rubber-dotted gloved hands when the samples performed a particular posture with the elbow bent at 90°. Results from the experiments urge operators to be selective on glove use, leading to not only being able to use their hands effectively, but also to avoid any accidents that may be caused by hand fatigue.

Article Details

บทความวิจัย (Research Article)


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