Build Your Manual Handling Skills

Manual handling means using your body to exert forces to lift, lower, push, pull, carry, move, hold or restrain any object or person.

Incorrect manual handling can lead to many injuries including muscle sprains or strains, abdominal hernias, back injuries and soft tissue injuries to the wrists, arms, shoulders, neck or legs. These conditions are known as musculoskeletal injuries or disorders.

While care and therapy staff will be subject to some manual handling during their daily duties, it is essential to follow the correct manual handling guidelines and procedures especially in dealing with patients and residents.

It is also essential to understand patient mobility status and use the correct equipment. Learn these skills in our professional online manual handling course.

Video Introduction

Course Outline

Manual Handling Introduction


Welcome to Total Health Physio's Manual Handling Course - we are thrilled to have you here to help provide you with the skills and knowledge of safe manual handling practices so you can provide safe care for yourself and those you are looking after.

1. What is Manual Handling


Manual handling training gives you the skills to safely undertake manual handling tasks, reducing your risk of injury. Appropriate training empowers you to ensure you are working safely, comfortably and productively.

1.1 Handling Position and Footwork


When we handle individuals who need assistance to move their limbs, we need to always take a gentle approach.

2. Safe Lifting Techniques


Consider the weight of the object, the environment and the height you are transferring to. If there are any doubts, do not attempt to lift the object. Includes steps to safe lifting technique.

3. Sit to Stand


It is very important to encourage individuals to participate as much as possible with all transfers.

This approach supports best long term outcomes for the individual, and less stress on the body.

4. Mobilising with an Individual


There are many reasons whereby an individual may require assistance with walking, including behavioural issues, poor balance, poor cognition, movement disorders, neurological conditions or reduced walking endurance.

5. Stairs


It is important to note that stairs are not an appropriate option for everyone.

Only consider taking the stairs if the individual has been assessed and can navigate them safely.

6. Wheelchair


Before using a wheelchair, it's important to check that it's in good condition.

This includes checks of the tyre inflation, wheels rolly properly, brakes are working and then the user is positioned correctly. Includes steps for transferring into wheelchair.

7. Rolling in Bed


The log roll is a technique commonly used to roll an individual on their side.

There are many reasons to perform this maneuver, including fitting slings, positioning slide sheets, everyday pressure care, hygiene and comfort.

8. Bed Mobility


Slide sheets can be used to reposition individuals to an optimal position.

Slide sheets are a great tool as they reduce friction, making it easier to move individuals. Includes steps on how to use slide sheets.

9. Lying to Sitting


It is important to be aware of a person's capability and how much they can help.

Some may need verbal prompts, while others will require hands-on assistance.

10. Standing Machine


Standing machines are a great piece of equipment for individuals who are able to weight bear, but unable to walk.

The individual must be able to follow instructions, grip handles, maintain sitting balance and participate in the standing process.

11. Sara Steady


It is suitable for people who have been assessed as having enough strength to using it safely and effectively.

We will be demonstrating how to use a Sara Steady.

12. Lifting Machine/ Ceiling Hoist


Are used to transfer individuals who cannot weight bear at all, or have difficulty weight bearing.

Requires two staff members minimum. Slings are allocated to individuals and are not to be shared due to infection control purposes.

12.1 Transferring from the Floor - Mobile Lifting Machine


It is not appropriate to lift an individual off a floor by yourself.

When an individual on the floor due to a fall, we need to assess for an injury prior to transfer.

13. Car Transfer


Safe car transfers are an important part of living an independent life.

We must assess the environment - ensuring we are parked with enough space. The height of the car needs to be considered. Covers comprehensive car transfers.

14. Conclusion


Congratulations everyone! You have made it to the end!

Manual Handling Training Deliverables

  • Theory Presentation Content
    • Rights and Responsibilities
    • Causation/Relationship of Injury
    • Defining Manual Processes
    • Protecting yourself
    • Practical and modular lifting techniques
    • Strategies to avoid lifting
    • Workplace Specific Manual Handling Techniques
    • Preventing common injuries
    • Preventing RSI injuries to the elbows, wrists and hands
    • How to use visual and verbal cues in order to manage the patient’s position.
    • General prevention strategies
  • Outcomes
    • Identify the way in which staff perform their daily duties and the physical effect it will have
    • Developing appropriate movement patterns for bending, leaning and reaching tasks.
    • Identify which bending, lifting and reaching movement patterns  can contribute to detrimental effects on the body
    • Identify specific techniques for use in tasks associated with the Aged and Community Care Service Industry.
    • Understand the rights and responsibilities of injury management

Earn a Manual Handling Training Certification

At the completion of the training, participants are signed off as being competent in manual handling.

Total Health Physio provides Manual Handling certificates which are suitable for the majority of Australian employers.

Your certification is valid for 365 days after completion.

Who is Eligible for Manual Handling Training?

Can I use this certificate to gain employment?

Absolutely! Aged care facilities, Home care package providers and companies that employ disability support workers require you to have basic manual handling training prior to joining their organisations and you can use this certificate as proof of completion of an online manual handling course in order to gain employment with these companies

Is this course suitable for aged care workers?

It certainly is suitable for aged care workers – this course is used as the fundamentals of manual handling at an aged care facility that Total Health Physio provides in-house Physiotherapy for. Total Health Physio provides this manual handling training to carers, nurses, other allied health professionals, catering staff and volunteers at aged care facilities.

Is this course suitable for those employed by a disability service organisation?

Definitely! We partner with disability organisations and support coordination companies to provide this online manual handling course to their support workers. The course covers wide range of manual handling techniques that is relevant to both disability and aged care workers.

Is this course suitable for healthcare workers?

Conducted by highly experienced Physiotherapists this course is suited to healthcare workers who want to brush up or improve their manual handling skills. The team at Total Health Physio have all completed this online manual handling course as its important to keep up to date with the latest equipment as well as optimising the best manual handling techniques.

Free Module – Wheelchairs

Enrol in Online Manual Handling Training

Simply enroll online or contact us with your enquiry and and our Australian staff will help. Please know that:

  • This course is self-paced learning
  • Our course works on any computer, laptop or mobile phone
  • There are course videos and graded quizzes
  • You will earn a shareable certificate upon completion

Total Health Physio comprises qualified Physiotherapists & Occupational Therapists who are highly appropriate to deliver this manual handling education.

We Offer In-Person Manual Handling For Organisations (Min 6+ People)

We offer Manual Handling Training in-person throughout Melbourne, Victoria.

  • We visit your facility or you are welcome to book our office
  • Pricing and curriculum is tailored to client requirements
  • Suitable for aged care facilities, disability organisations and homecare package providers
  • Staff will earn a certificate of compliance upon completion

Total Health Physio comprises qualified Physiotherapists & Occupational Therapists who are highly appropriate to deliver this manual handling education.

Manual Handling Training FAQ

  • Have you had feedback about your manual handling training?

    Yes. At Total Health Physio we pride ourselves on delivering quality training and this is reflected in the feedback we receive from our participants.

    Recently we delivered manual handling training to a cohort of volunteers and we had really strong feedback, particularly highlighting how engaging the participants found the training to be.

    We find care staff are appreciative of this training, as it is an investment into their wellbeing and knowledge whilst performing their duties.

  • What outcomes does manual handling training lead to for the facility involved?

    Manual handling training creates a safer environment for residents and for staff. It reinforces safe lifting practices, which in turn prevents workplace injuries. It also contributes to a supportive care environment for the patient.

    Manual handling training is also integral for facilities to achieve their NDIS and Aged Care Standards compliance.

    Manual handling training results in various positive outcomes. Most importantly, this improves the quality of life and independence of our patients, and also leads to a safer workplace with care staff being trained appropriately for their role.

    There is the added benefit of better staff retention and performance in their role.

    For all of these reasons, manual handling training is a very important part of residential care for staff and residents.

  • What are some scenarios where family members would require manual handling support?

    There are many daily tasks family members perform for their family members, such as helping them out of bed, getting out of a chair, wheelchair, etc, these can lead to injuries for those family members.

    People in scenarios like these would benefit from professional manual handling instruction.

    Total Health Physio addresses each patient holistically, we will assist family members with manual handling if that is appropriate.

  • How important is manual handling in the duties of a clinician?

    Manual handling is an essential part of therapy in the community. It plays a significant role for clinicians because it informs what we do and how we interact with our patients. It is also critical to preventing workplace injuries and accidents.

    As therapists, our role often involves transferring patients in a range of ways. Manual handling also relates to specialised equipment such as hoists or standing machines too; it becomes very important to learn about and understand how to use the equipment safely and effectively. This is particularly important for patients that are using Assistive Equipment.

  • Can manual handling training help care staff with patients with complex conditions? (i.e. spinal cord injuries)

    As per the first question in this FAQ, every resident at an aged care facility will have a care plan in place. This care plan is based upon assessments to determine exactly what is required for each individual.

    An overview of the patient’s care plan is located in their room to ensure that each carer is aware of that person’s ability and mobility status.

    For example, there are patients who require hoists. In those cases, this is clearly indicated in their care plan so that any carers involved know exactly what is required to best support that person. For a patient who is non-ambulant due to a spinal cord injury, their care plan may include the requirement of either a standing or hoist machine which means they will require two people supporting them