Population reach envelopes

I am curious to the population measured for the reach envelope tool such as county of origin, sex/gender, and year when measured. I would also like to know if the comfortable reach is only measurred between 60 and 70 degrees or if that angle happend to be the comfortable range.

Dear Pablo,

Q1: population information
The study was performed in Delft, The Netherlands, between 1993-1995. In 1993 627 older adults (age 50-94), and in 1994 and 1995 123 younger adults (age 20-30) were measured. Below you can find the table with sexe per age group. More details you can find in the publication Molenbroek (1998) and Molenbroek and Steenbekkers (1998).

Age group Male Female Total
20-30 55 68 123
50-59 81 85 166
60-69 94 104 198
70-79 95 100 195
80+ 33 35 68
Total 358 392 750

Q2: Comfortable reach range
The comfortable reach was measured in two conditions: standing and sitting. The comfortable reach envelope standing was performed after the protocol-question: “can you draw a curve, which illustrates the convenient place for grasping something from the shelves in the supermarket”. Participants were asked to move from down to upwards. Participants had to draw a curve while standing with stretched legs and bending was allowed in the hips. They had the possibility to draw from 0˚ to 90˚.

The results gave a 60˚ ~165cm* (* from heel) to 70˚ ~102cm* range to be considered most comfortable for P95, and 60˚ ~103cm* to 70˚ ~181cm* range for P5.

Thus the study range was beyond 60-70˚, but this range (incl. the distance, as reach is not only limited by degrees) was considered most comfortable by participants. For more details, please see Molenbroek (1998) and Molenbroek and Steenbekkers (1998).

That said, it really depends on what you design and for what population what values to take. If you need assistance, please describe below what you are designing and for what population; we will try to advice you.

Molenbroek, J. F. (1998). Reach envelopes of older adults. In Proceedings of the human factors and ergonomics society annual meeting. Vol. 42, No. 2, pp. 166-170. DOI: 10.1177/154193129804200205
[A free copy can be found on ResearchGate]

Molenbroek, J.F.M. and Steenbekkers, L.P.A. (1998) Reaching envelopes. In Steenbekkers, L.P.A. and van Beijsterveldt, C.E.M. (Eds.) Design-relevant characteristics of ageing users. Delft University Press, Delft, The Netherlands. Retrieved from Design-relevant characteristics of ageing users; backgrounds and guidelines for product innovation | TU Delft Repositories