Revision of the design of a standard for the dimensions of school furniture

J F M MolenbroekC J Snijders


In this study an anthropometric design process was followed. The aim was to improve the fit of school furniture sizes for European children. It was demonstrated statistically that the draft of a European standard does not cover the target population. No literature on design criteria for sizes exists, and in practice it is common to calculate the fit for only the mean values (P50). The calculations reported here used body dimensions of Dutch children, measured by the authors' Department, and used data from German and British national standards. A design process was followed that contains several steps, including: Target group, Anthropometric model and Percentage exclusion. The criteria developed in this study are (1) a fit on the basis of 1% exclusion (P1 or P99), and (2) a prescription based on popliteal height. Based on this new approach it was concluded that prescription of a set size should be based on popliteal height rather than body height. The drafted standard, Pren 1729, can be improved with this approach. A European standard for school furniture should include the exception that for Dutch children an extra large size is required.


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