The Effects of Layers of Cold Weather Clothing and Type of Liner on the Psychomotor Performance of Men
ARMY NATICK RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT LABS MA CLOTHING EQUIPMENT AND MATERIALS ENGINEERING LAB
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This study was conducted to determine the differential effects on mens motor performance of wearing the clothing layers comprising the Army cold weather system, including both nylon polyester Std. A and mohair frieze Std. B liners. The dependent variables investigated were body flexibility, rate of movement, psychomotor coordination, manual dexterity, and effort exerted for task performance. Sixteen Army enlisted men, outfitted in winter underwear, performed the battery of 14 tasks under each of the following conditions 1 wool shirt and trousers, 2 plus field jacket and trousers, 3 plus Std. A liners or Std. B liners in the field layer, 4 plus parka and arctic trousers, 5 plus Std. A or Std. B liners in the arctic layer. In general, Std. B liners impaired certain aspects of psychomotor performance, particularly body flexibility, to a greater extent than the Std. A liners did. In addition, the Std. A liners were rated more favorably by the users and resulted in a somewhat lower level of physical exertion, as represented by heart rate, than did the Std. B liners. Psychomotor performance level and user acceptance also decreased as the number of clothing layers was increased, but the layers were not equally deleterious in their effects on performance nor were all aspects of performance equally impaired by wearing a certain combination of layers. Interference with specific flexibility movements was attributed to such design characteristics as clothing weight, bulk, garment waist lengths, and garment waist dimensions.
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