Correlation between fitness parameters and an occupational rescue simulation among emergency care providers in North West province, South Africa: A pilot study
pdf

Keywords

emergency medical care
physical fitness
occupational demands
rescue simulation
physical preparedness

How to Cite

1.
Mthombeni S, Coopoo Y, Noorbhai H. Correlation between fitness parameters and an occupational rescue simulation among emergency care providers in North West province, South Africa: A pilot study. Australasian Journal of Paramedicine [Internet]. 2021Mar.3 [cited 2021Jun.23];18. Available from: https://ajp.paramedics.org/index.php/ajp/article/view/862

Abstract

Objective

The purpose of the study was to examine the relationship between validated fitness parameters and an emergency rescue simulation (RS) circuit performed by emergency care providers (ECPs).

Methods

A cross-sectional study was selected to determine the relationship between the fitness tests and the RS. Twenty ECPs in the North West province of South Africa participated in the study. Demographic data were collected, followed by testing of anthropometric characteristics and field fitness tests measuring muscular strength, muscular endurance, aerobic capacity, anaerobic capacity and flexibility. Thereafter, participants had to complete a RS circuit. Pearson’s correlation coefficient was used to assess the relationship between variables. Differences in age, gender and body mass index formed part of the descriptive statistics. A test-retest reliability method was applied to evaluate the reliability of the RS.

Results

Significant correlations were found between the RS and the 250 m shuttle run (r=0.83; p<0.01), flexed-arm hang test (r=-0.59; p<0.01), Cooper 12-minute test (r=-0.56; p<0.01), and the maximum push-up test (r=-0.51; p<0.05).

Conclusion

Findings demonstrate a possible association between aerobic capacity, anaerobic capacity, muscular strength, muscular endurance and ECP performance in an occupational task-related RS. Improved performance in these specific fitness areas may enable ECPs to be better prepared for the physical demands of their occupation. The RS may also be used as a tool to assess job (physical) preparedness of qualified ECPs during their recruitment, but this requires further validation.

https://doi.org/10.33151/ajp.18.862
pdf

References

Coffey B, MacPhee R, Socha D, Fischer SL. Physical demands description of paramedic work in Canada. Int J Indus Erg 2016;53:355-62.

Bucher J, Dos Santos F, Frazier D, Merlin MA. Rapid extrication versus the Kendrick Extrication Device (KED): comparison of techniques used after motor vehicle collisions. West J Emerg Med 2015;16:453-8. doi:10.5811/westjem.2015.1.21851

Hunter J, MacQuarrie A, Sheridan S, et al. Health and fitness status of Australian paramedics: a cause for concern. Abstract from Health, Wellness & Society Conference; 2018 Sep 20-21; London, UK. Available at: https://researchoutput.csu.edu.au/en/publications/health-and-fitness-status-of-australian-paramedics-a-cause-for-co

Hegg-Deloye S, Corbeil P, Brassard P, et al. Work-related and dietary factors associated with weight gain over the period of employment in paramedics. Occup Med Health Aff 2014;2. doi:10.4172/2329-6879.1000173

Mthombeni S, Coopoo Y, Noorbhai H. Physical health status of emergency care providers in South Africa. Asian J Sports Med 2020;11:1-8.

Mthombeni SK, Coopoo Y, Noorbhai H. Fitness levels of rural emergency medical and rescue service providers in the North West province, South Africa. Occup Health Southern Afr 2020;26:111-6.

Russo SG, Neumann P, Reinhardt S, et al. Impact of physical fitness and biometric data on the quality of external chest compression: A randomised, crossover trial. BMC Emerg Med 2011;11:20. doi:10.1186/1471-227X-11-20.

Sobuwa S, Christopher LD. Emergency care education in South Africa: past, present and future. Australasian Journal of Paramedicine 2019;16. doi: https://doi.org/10.33151/ajp.16.647Hoffman R, Collingwood TT. Fit for Duty. 3rd edn. Champaign, Illinois: Human Kinetics Inc, 2015; p.54.

Swain DP, editor. ACSM’s resource manual for guidelines for exercise testing and prescription. 7th edn. Human Kinetics Inc, 2013; p.110-6.

Miller TA, editor. NSCA’s guide to tests and assessments. Champaign: Human Kinetics Inc, 2012.

Rhea RM, Alvar BA, Gray R. Physical fitness and job performance of fire fighters. J Str Cond Res 2004;18:348-52.

Coopoo Y, Govender AN. An analysis of the fitness demands and the establishment of norms for U-21 South African provincial rugby players. Afr J Phys Act Health Sci 2002;8:61-74.

Lindberg A, Oksa J, Gavhed D, Malm C. Field tests for evaluating the aerobic capacity of firefighters. PLoS One 2013;8:1-8.

Ock S, Kim Y, Chung J, Kim S. Influence of physical fitness on the performance of 5-minute continuous chest compression. Eur J Emerg Med 2011;18:251.

Larsson H, Tergern M, Monnier A, et al. Content validity index and intra and interrater reliability of a new muscle strength/endurance test battery for Swedish soldiers. PLoS One 2015;10:1-13.

Williford HN, Duey WJ, Olson MS, Howard R, Wang N. Relationship between firefighting suppression tasks and physical fitness. Ergonomics 2010;42:1179-86.

Michaelides AM, Parpa MP, Henry LJ, Thompson GB, Brown BS. Assessment of physical fitness aspects and their relationship to firefighters’ job abilities. J Str Cond Res 2010;25:956-65.

Poplin G, Harris RB, Pollack KM, Peate WF, Burgess JL. Beyond the fireground: injuries in the fire service. Inj Prev 2012;18:228-33. doi:10.1136/injuryprev-2011-040149

Fischer SL, Sinden KE, MacPhee RS: Ottawa Paramedic Service Research Team. Identifying the critical physical demanding tasks of paramedic work: towards the development of a physical employment standard. Appl Ergon 2017;65:233-9. doi:10.1016/j.apergo.2017.06.021 Epub 2017 Jul 12. PMID: 28802444.

Hansen D, Vranckx P, Broekmans T, et al. Physical fitness affects the quality of single operator cardiocerebral resuscitation in healthcare professionals. Eur J Emerg Med 2012;19:28-34.