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Article
Use of Body Armor Protection with Fighting Load Impacts Soldier Performance and Kinematics
Applied Ergonomics (2015)
  • Kari L. Loverro
  • Tyler N. Brown
  • Megan E. Coyne
  • Jeffrey M. Schiffman
Abstract

The purpose of this evaluation was to examine how increasing body armor protection with and without a fighting load impacted soldiers' performance and mobility. Thirteen male soldiers performed one performance (repeated 30-m rushing) and three mobility tasks (walk, walk over and walk under) with three different body armor configurations and an anterior fighting load. Increasing body armor protection, decreased soldier performance, as individual and total 30-m rush times were significantly longer with greater protection. While increasing body armor protection had no impact on mobility, i.e. significant effect on trunk and lower limb biomechanics, during the walk and walk over tasks, greater protection did significantly decrease maximum trunk flexion during the walk under task. Adding fighting load may negatively impact soldier mobility, as greater maximum trunk extension was evident during the walk and walk over tasks, and decreased maximum trunk flexion exhibited during the walk under task with the fighting load.

Keywords
  • torso load,
  • gait,
  • obstacle negotiation
Disciplines
Publication Date
January, 2015
Citation Information
Kari L. Loverro, Tyler N. Brown, Megan E. Coyne and Jeffrey M. Schiffman. "Use of Body Armor Protection with Fighting Load Impacts Soldier Performance and Kinematics" Applied Ergonomics Vol. 46 Iss. Part A (2015)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/tyler_brown/2/