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Body Mechanics

This module provides students an overview of the correct ways to move the body to prevent injuries to themselves and patients.

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body mechanics lessons

The Body Mechanics module is designed according to the AES course framework, which includes four phases:

  1. Explore
  2. Learn & Practice
  3. Reflect
  4. Reinforce

Below you'll discover how AES can help you teach your students about body mechanics according to these four phases.

Phase 1: Explore


Activity: Patient Transfer Role Play

In this activity, students work in groups exploring how to properly transfer patients and communicate with them.

Phase 2: Learn & Practice


Unit 1: Safety Guidelines

In this unit, students will learn about: principles of body mechanics, including common causes of back injury, safety precautions for beds, wheelchairs, stretchers and transfer belts, and legal issues regarding safety equipment. 

  1. Body Mechanics 
  2. Equipment Safety 
  3. Quiz


Unit 2: Moving Patients

In this unit, students will learn about: moving patients with and without a draw sheet, turning and logrolling patients, using the dangling position, and recognizing pressure ulcers and orthostatic hypotension. 

  1. Pressure Ulcers 
  2. Moving Up In Bed 
  3. Turning and Logrolling 
  4. Dangling 
  5. Quiz


Unit 3: Positioning Patients

In this unit, students will learn about: guidelines for patient positioning as they place patients in supine, Fowler's, prone, Sim's, lateral, and chair positions using one-person and two-person methods. 


  1. Basic Bed Positions 
  2. Chair Positioning 
  3. Quiz


Unit 4: Transferring Patients: Bed

In this unit, students will learn about: safety guidelines for transferring patients including using manual or mechanical lifts and transferring a patient from bed to wheelchair and from wheelchair to bed and from bed to stretcher and from stretcher to bed. 


  1. Introduction to Transfers 
  2. Bed and Wheelchair Transfer 
  3. Bed and Stretcher Transfer 
  4. Quiz


Unit 5: Transferring Patients: Toilet and Vehicle

In this unit, students will learn about: safety guidelines for transfers between wheelchairs and toilets and wheelchairs and vehicles. 

  1. Wheelchair and Toilet Transfer 
  2. Wheelchair and Vehicle Transfer 
  3. Quiz

Phase 3: Reflect


Activity: Reflection Questions and Discussion

In this activity, students will journal about apply principles of body mechanics, monitor and respond to a patient's condition and preventing pressure ulcers. A class discussion on these topics can follow.

Phase 4: Reinforce


Activity: Body Mechanics Jive

In this activity, students work in groups to write and perform a song that help remember at least five principles of body mechanics.


Activity: Patient Care Scenarios

In this activity, students practice procedures learned in the module using various scenarios -- sometimes in less-than-ideal circumstances.


Activity: Current Event

Students will review articles for information related to a topic in the module. Once an article is found, students complete a Current Event form.

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