Ergonomic Evaluation of Winegrape Trellis Systems Pruning Operation

Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
  • Meyers, James M.;
  • Fathallah, Fadi A.;
  • Faucett, Julia;
  • Garcia, Erica G.;
  • Janowitz, Ira;
  • Kato, Andrew E.;
  • Miles, John A.


The winegrape industry suffers from high incidence rates of work-related musculoskeletal disorders. Pruning of dormant vines is a significant task, requiring long periods of highly repetitive and physically demanding work. The purpose of this study is to quantitatively evaluate five commonly used winegrape trellis systems with regard to the risk of developing musculoskeletal injuries to the wrist and lower back while pruning. Eleven subjects participated in this study. Subjects performed a simulated pruning task as wrist and trunk postures were gathered using electrogoniometers. The results showed significant postural differences among the trellis systems. Compared to the other systems, the VSP was determined to be the optimal system in terms of decreasing relative MSD risk. These results will assist vineyards in the selection process of suitable trellis systems that will include the worker health aspect in conjunction with other trellis-related parameters such as grape quality and productivity.

Full article can be found in: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
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