A systematic review of the literature examines why manual handling training contributes little to the prevention of back pain and MSDs. The study argues for training programs to use a variety of methods in diverse contexts, in contrast to the uniformity of content that is essentially based on the so-called “straight back, bent knees” technique.
Despite the variability of contexts, training content is standardized and exportable from one workplace to another. It neglects the interactions between workers and their environments, which could explain the ineffectiveness of training in preventing occupational injuries.
One suggestion put forward by the researchers is to review the content of training programs in order to provide more operational possibilities to handlers. Despite a certain potential, the “straight back, bent knees” technique should no longer predominate; instead, it should be supplemented with specific content adapted to each work context.