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Effect of prototype armrest on comfort and muscle activity among selected male university motorcyclists during prolonged riding process


Alias, Ayuni Nabilah (2015) Effect of prototype armrest on comfort and muscle activity among selected male university motorcyclists during prolonged riding process. Masters thesis, Universiti Putra Malaysia.


Introduction: Motorcycles had become one of the most popular modes of transportation, well accepted by Malaysians. The awareness for the need safety in motorcycles has increased, with more inventions being applied to ensure safety and comfort motorcyclist. However, motorcyclist struggles with discomfort of their arm during prolonged riding as most of motorcycles in market are not equipped with arm posture support. Riding motorcycles without armrest can cause adverse health and psychological effects among motorcyclist in a long term. Therefore, the primary aim of this study is to examine the effect of using prototype armrest in terms of discomfort rating and muscle activity on the selected male university motorcyclists during prolonged riding process. Method: This study was experimental study among male students and staffs in Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM). A total of 102 motorcyclists had participated in this study with 51 motorcyclists of experimental group were asked to sit on a motorcycle with armrest and another 51 motorcyclists of control group sat on a motorcycle without armrest. The experiment took place in a quiet room in a laboratory with adequate lighting. Each respondent had to attend experimental sessions on two different days (with a minimum three day interval between them). Each session had lasted for 2-hour. During the 2-hour session, a riding simulator system was displayed and respondents were asked to control the handlebar of motorcycle as in real road. The video screen of the riding simulator presented a view of road scenery with computer generated video simulating daytime riding condition. At every 15-minute interval, respondents were required to evaluate their discomfort level for all body part on the Borg’s CR-10 questionnaire. The Borg’s Scale Rating ( > 5) is considered as the ‘break point’, as point where the respondents rated their discomfort as strong. Therefore, this point considered where the respondents started to feel the discomfort in their parts of body. Besides that, Electromyography signals were used to monitor recorded muscle activity for the right and left arm of the respondents with the surface of electrodes attached. Results: The discomfort rating of the experimental group had showed 5% to 15% reduction compared to the control group during the testing period. Results showed that the discomfort rating of arm and hands was significantly lower (2.0+2.20, p<0.05) among experimental group compared to control group. In terms of discomfort ‘break point’ (Borg’s Scale Rating > 5), arms and hands are the most affected body parts prior to +82% comfort changes with the use of the prototype armrest. Muscle activity of respondents showed that there are 10% to 25% reductions of electromyography levels for both right and left arm’s muscles. There is a positive effect of exertion changes (%) on the flexor carpum radialis (right=24.54%, left=23.98%) and flexor carpum ulnaris (right=8.18%, left=10.62%) muscles of both arms with usage of prototype armrest. The results also revealed that there were significant exertion (X2 (63) = 757.76, p<0.001) of electromyography levels among experimental group compared to the control group with 2-hour riding process. Conclusion: This study has provided new insights into the effects of prototype armrest usage on motorcyclists during prolonged riding process in a controlled laboratory session. The use of prototype armrest has provided a beneficial ergonomic feature which reduces muscle and body’s discomfort and increase riding performance with less negative impact on muscle activity among motorcyclist. Motorcyclists’ riding posture is also related to both comfort and discomfort during the riding process. This shows prototype armrest is capable of providing an ideal support and provide comfort to the motorcyclists during prolonged riding process. Therefore, this prototype armrest may reduce fatigue and indirectly reduce accident that contributed by human factors.

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Additional Metadata

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Subject: Muscles - physiology
Subject: Motorcyclists
Call Number: FPSK(m) 2015 73
Chairman Supervisor: Sharifah Khadijah binti Syed Ismail, PhD
Divisions: Faculty of Medicine and Health Science
Depositing User: Ms. Nur Faseha Mohd Kadim
Date Deposited: 01 Apr 2019 02:11
Last Modified: 01 Apr 2019 02:11
URI: http://psasir.upm.edu.my/id/eprint/67827
Statistic Details: View Download Statistic

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