Rapid upper limb assessment (RULA) in ergonomic assessment: A comprehensive review

Ajay Kumar, Surendra U. Kamath

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


INTRODUCTION: RULA (rapid upper limb assessment) is a survey method developed for use in ergonomics investigations of workplaces where work-related upper limb disorders are reported. There are various researches available regarding the use of RULA in assessing work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WRMSDs). But till date, there is no compiled review available regarding the comprehensive research on the uses of RULA in various ergonomic assessment. OBJECTIVE: To compile the availability of article related to the uses of RULA in assessing WRMSDs among workers from various fields. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The articles related to RULA in ergonomic assessment were searched using the reputed academic databases, including PubMed, Medline, CINAHL, PsycINFO, and EBSCO from inception to July 22, 2019 using the five keywords, “ergonomics,” “musculoskeletal,” “workplace,” and “rapid upper limb assessment.” These keywords were combined using the Boolean operators “AND,” “OR,” and “NOT.” RESULTS: A total of 263 articles (n=263) were identified. After the removal of 161 duplicate articles, 102 articles were screened for the analysis. Among then, 21 articles were excluded and 81 full-text articles were assessed for eligibility. Again 68 articles were excluded due to not meeting the inclusion criteria and finally 13 articles were included in the qualitative comprehensive analysis. CONCLUSION: The wider application of RULA has been confirmed from this comprehensive review.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)429-437
Number of pages9
JournalRevista Pesquisa em Fisioterapia
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 25-07-2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation
  • Occupational Therapy


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