Objective: The objective of the study was recognition of rural women’s opinions concerning the degree of heaviness of work activities performed and obtaining the answer to the question: What is the actual level of loading rural women with work?
Methods: The basic research instrument was a questionnaire form. A representative group of women aged 40–50 were selected for the study because this group had the most complete family structure. The study was conducted among rural women living in the commune of Zwierzyniec. Family size and multi-generationality were analyzed, as well as family members’ assistance in household and field activities. The type of work performed was analyzed with consideration of the duration of work and body position while performing this work. Self-reported degree of loading with work on a farm was analyzed, and effective energy expenditure calculated for individual work activities performed by women, based on which the actual degree of loading with work was determined.
Results: The respondents generally perceived their loading with work as low. They considered household jobs as not loading with or not exerting any effect on their fatigue and state of health. A very weak statistical relationship was observed between the duration of loading with household jobs and the perceived degree of loading with this work. The Kołmogorov-Smirnov test showed that the evaluations expressed by women concerning the degree of loading with household chores did not depend on time devoted to these work activities. The majority of women similarly evaluated work load, irrespective of the actual degree of loading. Work activities performed in a household were classified according to work load as heavy, medium-heavy and mediocre. Subjective evaluations of work load by rural women considerably differed from the assessment performed using the work time schedule method.
PMID 24364463 - click here to show this article in PubMed