ABSTRACT: This study was conducted to examine the effect of ergonomic desk design for improving motor accuracy in the writing performance of cerebral palsy students. Thirty-two cerebral palsy students were tested in four workstations. The test order was randomized. Work surface design involved a regular work surface and a cutout work surface, and desk angle design included a horizontal desk top and a 20 degrees inclined desktop. The height of the desk and chair were adjusted relatively to each subject's height and popliteal height. Writing performance while using the four workstations were compared by administering the Motor Accuracy Test. Motor writing accuracy adjusted for speed was significantly better at the cutout work surface than at the regular work surface. Students with athetoid quadriplegia benefited more from the cutout surface. Although the inclined desktop was more appropriate for better vision and less neck flexion, there were no differences in accuracy scores and adjusted scores between the horizontal desk and the inclined desk. These findings support the hypothesis that the cutout work surface, which was accommodated to the anterior trunk, facilitates trunk control and provides forearm support in addition to improving writing performance.
Applied Ergonomics 04/2003; 34(2):141-7. · 1.43 Impact Factor