According to a research group at the Amsterdam School for Health Professionals in the Netherlands, they have concluded that
Lumbar or Lower back supports are not useful in the prevention of lower back pain.
This is not good news for many especially for bakers.
Read this article for more information.
Working as a baker, the typical load of a bag of flour is 16kg. When I was working as a baker in a small craft bakery in London, 32 kg bag of flour is the most common. Regulations has reduced the maximum weight to 25kg. Still I had to drag, at least 5 times a day, the 32-kg bag to scale and weigh out the ingredients on a batch of pain l'ancienne or baguette. After that I had to weigh out about 17kg of water for each recipe. So you can imagine at the end of each working day, my back would be complaining from all the strains.
Let's not forget those dedicated Oven Hands (bakers who are in charge of baking breads only). They have to load breads into each deck of the oven. A deck oven usually consists of 4 decks. The highest deck is of course right above most people's reach. Let's do the calculations of how much they need to carry.
A huge metal tray can easily weigh over 5kg.
A tin mould about a kilo. So we fill each tin with 1kg bread. Tin + Bread = 2kg. We then fill each
tray with 5 to 6 tins. That makes 2kg x 5 = 10kg. Sometimes more.
The total weight of each tray with tins and all comes up to 15 kg!
Each deck fits 6 trays. So 15kg x 6 = 60kg for each batch of bread that the Oven Hand had to load!
Well we are not calculating how much breads they bake in a single day yet! So usually they have to wear back supports to prevent back injuries. But reports have now shown they are not useful at all. So what do they do now?
These are all part and parcel of a baker's daily work. Churning out freshly baked loaves that ultimately end up on your table as a sandwich. Next time you chew on that piece of wholemeal bread, think about how much work has gone into it!