The BACK-TRACK system
How does it work?
The BACK-TRACK is worn on a belt and the device detects that it is rotating as the wearer starts to lean and stoop forwards. At a programmed angle, the device vibrates to alert the wearer that they are stooping (the behaviour we are trying to avoid). Recommended lifting techniques do not cause the BACK-TRACK to tilt forwards and therefore it won’t vibrate.
The BACK-TRACK device detects free-fall which is used to detect jumping from delivery vehicles cabs and tailgates. If the device detects free-fall for more than a few hundredths of a second, it will assume the wearer is jumping and will then vibrate on landing to remind the wearer not to jump from their vehicle.
The accelerometer inside the BACK-TRACK device detects movement and can therefore be used to monitor activity, which is vital for rehabilitating someone with back pain. Evidence indicates that sitting at a desk for long periods will inhibit the rehabilitation of an injury. Therefore the BACK-TRACK device – when being used in Rehabilitation mode – monitors if a minimum of 1 minute of walking is achieved every 30 minutes. If not, the BACK-TRACK device alerts the wearer to remind them to maintain their mobility to maintain an effective rehabilitation.
A three-axis solid-state accelerometer monitors what the device is doing and events such as stooping or jumping are logged on internal memory. When the device is connected to the BACK-TRACK upload hub, these events are automatically uploaded to
BACK-TRACK’s servers. The BACK-TRACK’s internal lithium-ion battery will also charge in preparation for the next day.
Data Upload Hub
The data upload hub is used to connect multiple devices to the upload station so that the devices can upload the collected data and be charged. These connect to our servers using a 3G dongle or if available, your guest Wi-Fi network.
The BACK-TRACK devices alert the individuals via a real-time intervention – i.e. a vibration alert when it detects either poor lifting technique via stooping, jumping from a vehicle or inactivity. These alerts raise an awareness of risk to the individual.
However, the behavioural change process is enhanced by an awareness of the collected data. Reviewing the collected data also promotes engagement by the wearer with the BACK-TRACK System.
The collected data is reported in a number of ways dependant on the way the BACK-TRACK System is being used.
Reducing risk across the organisation
When being used to reduce the incidence of back (and leg / ankle) injuries across a large group of employees, the BACK-TRACK Manual Handling Competency Programme is used.
The Overview Report shows those potentially at an elevated level of risk and they will have a 1:1 to investigate why and encourage best lifting practices.
The Competency Programme is usually managed by the operational team and FLMs.
Other implementation options are monitoring processes rather than individuals i.e., via a workplace assessment, whilst some organisations are using BACK-TRACK for the induction phase for new employees.
Managing the Rehab / Return-to-work process
If a device is being used to assist an individual with their rehabilitation / return to work, then only their data is accessed. The rehabilitation module incorporates a RTW questionnaire, a back care guide relevant to the individual’s job function and an online template that is used to document
the rehabilitation process.
The module has been designed with healthcare professionals and a respected ergonomics consultancy.
The rehab programme has been designed to be coordinated by either an OHA or by an FLM.
BACK-TRACK for Rehab gives you a process to assist in the management of a rehab programme from day 1 to returning to normal duties.