Work-related musculoskeletal diseases (MSDs) are still frequent and important. Excessive physical workloads, for example lifting and carrying loads, are an important cause. Risk assessments are an essential element for the prevention of MSDs in the workplace.
The Safety and Health at Work Act (ArbSchG) requires a risk assessment. The findings form the foundation for operational action in the workplace. Preventive measures are required if risks are detected. These measures may be technological, ergonomic or organisational redesigns or special occupational medical care. Secure risk assessment analyses are the basic prerequisite for substantiating effective and efficient measures. This requires descriptions of the physical workload, its duration, frequency and sequence, as well as an assessment of the possible risk potential.