Standing, kneeling and squatting at work – health-based limit values

In the present report, at the request of the Minister of Social Affairs and Employment, the Health Council of the Netherlands has investigated whether at the present time there are any new scientific insights concerning health-based or safety-based limit values for work performed while standing, kneeling or squatting.
This report is one of a series of advisory reports in which the Committee on the Identification of Workplace Risks examining occupational risks covered by the Dutch Working Conditions Act and its associated regulations. To answer the Minister’s questions, the Committee studied the scientific data on adverse health effects of working in standing, kneeling or squatting position, and considered the results of longitudinal studies to be particularly important, as they involve the least likelihood of bias.
On the basis of the available scientific data, the Committee concluded that it is not possible to indicate a safe level below which no adverse health effects would be expected for people who work in standing, kneeling or squatting position. However, it was possible to obtain information on the extent of the risks of lower-back complaints arising from either working in standing position or working in squatting position.

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