Changes in physical performance among construction workers during extended workweeks with 12-hour workdays

Int Arch Occup Environ Health. 2010 Jan;83(1):1-8. doi: 10.1007/s00420-009-0471-0. Epub 2009 Oct 27.


Purpose: To investigate changes of physical performance during long working hours and extended workweeks among construction workers with temporary accommodation in camps.

Methods: Nineteen construction workers with 12-h workdays and extended workweeks participated. Physical performance in the morning and evening of the second and eleventh workdays was tested by endurance, ability to react to a sudden load, flexibility of the back, handgrip strength and sub-maximal HR during a bicycle test. HR was registered throughout two separate workdays.

Results: HR during each of the two separate workdays corresponded to a relative workload of 25%. Sub-maximal HR was lower, reaction time faster and handgrip strength higher in the end of each test day. In the end of the work period, sub-maximal HR was lower, reaction time faster and sitting balance was better.

Conclusion: No trends of decreased physical performance were found after a workday or a work period.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Blood Pressure
  • Facility Design and Construction*
  • Hand Strength
  • Heart Rate
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupational Health
  • Oxygen Consumption
  • Physical Endurance*
  • Reaction Time
  • Task Performance and Analysis*
  • Time Factors