When polled, the number one complaint among housekeepers consistently comes down to making guestroom beds. Regardless of a worker’s age of physical fitness, flipping a guestroom’s mattress over constantly will create back problems and weakness due to repetitive motion.
Using a tool such as a mattress lifter eliminates the problem and addresses worker’s compensation concerns.
“If you are a housekeeper lifting mattresses for 20 years, it is a real problem,” said Steven Gordon, president of Cadence Keen Innovations Solutions. “Working in housekeeping is like going to the gym with the amount of heavy lifting involved. Mattress lifters can help reduce the fatigue.”
Using a mattress lifter, housekeeping employees can avoid back strain associated with changing beds.
One alternative to the mattress lifter is the use of fitted sheets. These sheets are easier to fold under a mattress without lifting the bed at every corner, speeding up the bed-making process as well.
The most frequent bed-making injury comes from changing pillows, the number two physical complaint from housekeepers. Cotton pillowcases shrink after just a few washes, making it more difficult for housekeeping to guide the pillow in. Frequently, workers pin the pillowcase to their chest using their chin. Tools exist to hold pillows in place while the pillowcase is pulled over them, reducing the effort involved in the process.
“Modern hotel bedding packages can have as many as six pillows piled on per bed,” said Todd Seiders, director of loss control for Petra Risk Solutions. “This can mean a lot of neck and back strains from replacing pillow cases.”