Royal Canadian Air Force Neck- and Back-Trouble Research – A Historical Review


  1. Xiao, A.
  2. Farrell, P.S.E.
Corporate Authors
Defence Research and Development Canada, Toronto Research Centre , Toronto ON (CAN)
Griffon Helicopter aircrew neck trouble is likely to distract aircrew from performing flying tasks and, in the extreme, may cause them to be grounded. Rotary-wing aircrew back pain issues have been researched in the RCAF since the 1980’s, while neck pain came to the forefront in the 2000’s. In cases of both neck and back trouble research, a number of Canadian research efforts were conducted ranging from understanding the problem to developing solutions. An effort to reinvigorate aircrew neck trouble research began after a 2012 Neck Strain Workshop, with a clear mandate to deliver solutions. This paper consolidates the research and studies that were performed for Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) on back and neck trouble leading up to current efforts. From this review, various research gaps and lessons learned are identified. Research gaps include: a) investigating the underlying mechanisms to musculoskeletal neck pain, b) finding solutions for musculoskeletal trouble other than neck, and c) developing solutions to musculoskeletal trouble within rotary-wing, fast-jet, army and navy communities. Key lessons learned include: a) multi-faceted problems (such as neck-trouble amongst aircrew) require multi-disciplinary teams to understand the problem and develop solutions, and b) oversight helps align research to a central goal, which may be aided with use of a common conceptual framework.

Il y a un résumé en français ici.

neck pain;back pain;aircrew;literature review;rotary-wing;fast-jet
Report Number
DRDC-RDDC-2016-D031 — Reference Document
Date of publication
01 Jul 2016
Number of Pages
Electronic Document(PDF)

Permanent link

Document 1 of 1

Date modified: