Study of Pregnant Swine Supports Cushioned Mat's Benefits
FREMONT, OH — A recent study of 164 pregnant pigs scientifically verified that what could be considered anti fatigue matting had a definite benefit on the animals' health. And while this research may have received attention only in animal and farming-related trade publications, it could have important implications for humans as well.
The researchers divided the pregnant pigs into two groups: one group spent most of its time on a hard concrete floor, while the other was housed on a concrete floor covered with a "cushioned" surface made using rubber matting materials.
Researchers then observed the pigs for 110 days during their pregnancies. To further verify the results of the study, the researchers observed the pigs during two pregnancies (two 110-day periods). The results were similar in both experiments.
The July 31, 2013, study was conducted by Julia Calderon-Diaz, a PhD candidate at University College, Dublin, Ireland, with assistance from Dr. Alan Fahey, of the same college.
The study's results showed evidence that covering concrete with a cushioned mat improved the locomotory (ease and capability of moving from one area to another) of the pigs. Researchers also found these pigs had a reduced risk of lameness, swellings, and wounds on their limbs.
"Surprisingly, these studies verifying the benefits of anti-fatigue-type matting [on pigs] are in some ways similar to human [study] results," says Dennis Knapp, national sales director for Crown Mats and Matting, a leading manufacturer of anti-fatigue mats.
"Anti-fatigue mats have a cushioning effect," he says. "Workers standing on them for long periods of time invariably have reduced pain, fatigue, and swelling in their lower limbs . . . and now we know, so do pregnant pigs."
Source: "Longitudinal study of the effect of rubber slat mats on locomotory ability, body, limb and claw lesions and dirtiness of group housed sows," http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23881683
About Crown Mats and Matting
For more than 70 years, Crown Mats and Matting has been a pioneer in the development and manufacture of matting products. Beginning with the invention of walk-off matting by the company's founder, R.P. Johnson, the company now has the most diverse matting product line offered in our industry. Crown sells matting through an extensive network of highly trained sales representatives throughout the United States and worldwide. These sales experts are familiar with the features and benefits of all matting systems and are able to help their clients find the right system for virtually any application.