Firefighters' physical work capacity
2014 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)Alternative title
Brandmäns fysiska arbetskapacitet (Swedish)
The overall aim of this thesis was to identify valid, simple, and inexpensive physical tests that can be used for evaluation of firefighters’ physical work capacity. Paper I included fulltime- and part-time firefighters (n = 193), aged 20-60 years. Perceived physical demands of firefighting work tasks were ranked, and comparisons between subject groups rating were done with the Mann Whitney U-test and Binominal test. Papers II and III included male firefighters and civilian men and women (n = 38), aged 24-57 years. Laboratory and field tests of aerobic fitness, muscle strength and endurance, balance, and simulated firefighting work tasks were performed. Physical capacity comparisons between subject groups were done and bivariate correlations between physical tests and work capacity in the simulated firefighting work tasks analyzed. Paper IV included the same subjects as in Paper II-III (training-set), and additional 90 subjects (prediction-set), aged 20-50 years. Laboratory and field tests of aerobic fitness, muscle strength and endurance and balance, and simulated firefighting work tasks were included. Data from the training-set was used to build models for prediction of firefighters’ physical work capacity, using multivariate statistic. The prediction-set was used to externally validate the selected models. Several work tasks were rated as physically demanding and significant differences (p < 0.05) in ratings were found between full-time and part-time firefighters (Paper I). Significant differences were found between subject groups in physical capacity, and work capacity (p < 0.01) (Paper II-IV). Both laboratory and field tests were significantly (p < 0.01) correlated with work capacity time (Paper II-III). The prediction (R2) and predictive power (Q2) of firefighters’ work capacity (Carrying hose baskets upstairs, Hose pulling, Demolition at or after a fire, Victim rescue, and Carrying hose baskets over terrain) was R2 = 0.74 to 0.91, and Q2 = 0.65 to 0.85, and the external validation ranged between R2: 0.38 to 0.80 (Paper IV).
In conclusion, rowing 500 m (s), maximal handgrip strength (kg), endurance bench press (n), running 3000 m (s and s scaled to body weight) upright barbell row (n) and standing broad jump (m) together provides valid information about firefighters’ physical work capacity.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå Universitet , 2014. , 67 p.
Umeå University medical dissertations, ISSN 0346-6612 ; 1652
Physical demands, performance, work capacity, aerobic fitness, anaerobic fitness, muscle strength, muscle endurance, balance, ergonomics, physical testing, SIMCA
Sport and Fitness Sciences
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-88729ISBN: 978-91-7601-054-9OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-88729DiVA: diva2:719114
2014-06-13, Biologihuset, Rum A 201, Umeå Universitet, Umeå, 13:00 (English)
Krustrup, Peter, Professor
Malm, Christer, Associate ProfessorOksa, Juha, Associate ProfessorGavhed, Desiree, Lecturer
List of papers