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Research shows tradies are getting healthier, but blokey culture still exists

APA National President Phil Calvert says “Our research shows that of those tradies who exercise or play sport regularly – more than half will spend a few minutes stretching and warming up because they know this helps reduce injuries. Yet when it comes to starting work for the day, in many respects another type of ‘sport’, less than a quarter will warm up, even though they know it could prevent stiffness and soreness at the end of the day.”

“When we dug deeper we found the majority of tradies were open to the idea of warming up if they felt their boss would be supportive of it. So there’s a real opportunity for trade employers to take a proactive position and encourage their employees to spend a few minutes each day getting their bodies warmed up for the physical work ahead.”

“It’s a bit like wearing hi-vis clothing on work sites – it’s become very much the norm over the past 10 years because we know that it makes workers safer; it should be the same for stretching before the work day starts.”

“Tradies are at particular risk of a range of injuries as a result of the intensity and repetitive nature of their work, so it’s important that they put these preventive health measures in place and get help before little niggles turn into more chronic issues. In this respect physios can be a tradies best friend.”

The Tradies Health Survey 20191 highlighted the blokey culture still symptomatic of many Australian tradies, including:

  • 88% reported taking good care of their tools while just over 60% said they take good care of their bodies and mental health
  • Only one quarter of tradies felt comfortable talking to co-workers about a mental health issue affecting their work, while just over half (53%) were open to discussing physical health concerns.
  • Believing that it is normal to be sore as a result of the work they do (69%)
  • Pushing their bodies past their healthy limits (42%)
  • Not following safe lifting guidelines (32%)
  • Almost half (48%) hadn’t taken a sick day in the past six months

This article was posted by the APA on the 1st of August to read more open the attached link

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