Ensuring that your safety wear fits correctly is not just a matter of comfort; it’s a critical component of workplace safety. Properly fitted workwear can protect you from hazards, while ill-fitting gear can impede movement and even lead to accidents.

For employers it’s important to make sure that any equipment provided to employees is properly-fitted as well as being in good condition. For workers, it’s important to keep your equipment up-to-date. Even something as simple as a change in weight could require that you buy some new safety wear to ensure that proper fit.

Understanding the Importance of Proper Fit 

The right fit for safety wear is crucial for several reasons. Firstly, it ensures maximum protection. Safety wear is designed to provide a barrier against specific hazards, and if it’s too loose, you risk exposure to dangerous substances or machinery. Imagine chemical suits or flame resistant clothing was too loose and allowed chemicals and/or flames to get inside the equipment. It’s possible that they’ll cause even more damage.

Conversely, if the safety gear is too tight, it can restrict movement and lead to musculoskeletal problems over time.

From a purely safety perspective, a proper fit is important. It’s not just that, however. Comfort comes into play as well, as well-fitting safety wear can enhance performance. Workers who are comfortable are less distracted and can focus better on their tasks. It also promotes a professional image, showing that the company values safety and employee well-being.

Measuring for Safety Wear

To get the best fit, you need to measure yourself accurately. Here’s how:

  • Chest: Measure under your arms, around the fullest part of your chest.
  • Waist: Measure around your natural waistline.
  • Hips: Stand with your feet together and measure around the fullest part of your hips.
  • Inseam: Measure from the crotch seam to the bottom of the leg.

Remember to keep the tape measure snug but not tight and to wear minimal clothing while measuring to get the most accurate numbers.

Trying On New Workwear 

When trying on new safety wear for the first time, there are several things to look for:

  • Range of Motion: Ensure you can move freely. Stretch your arms, bend over, and squat to test the garment’s flexibility.
  • Comfort: Check that there are no pinch points or areas that rub uncomfortably.
  • Layering Capability: Consider the clothing you’ll wear underneath. There should be enough room to layer without restricting movement.
  • Adjustability: Look for adjustable features like waistbands, straps, and cuffs that can help achieve a better fit.
  • Closure Systems: Zippers, buttons, and snaps should be easy to use and secure.
  • Durability: Inspect the seams and material for quality. Safety wear should be able to withstand the rigours of your job.

Maintaining Your Safety Wear 

Proper maintenance is also key to ensuring your safety wear continues to fit correctly and provide protection. After every time you use the equipment you should follow this checklist to properly inspect and maintain the equipment:

  • Washing: Clean your safety wear according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Improper washing can shrink or damage materials.
  • Inspection: Regularly check for signs of wear and tear. Promptly repair or replace damaged safety wear.
  • Storage: Store your safety wear in a clean, dry place to prevent mildew and degradation.

Need help?

Fitting your safety wear correctly sounds simple – and it is – but it’s also an essential step to get right and show diligence with when maintaining workplace safety. By taking the time to measure, try on, and maintain your workwear, you’re not only ensuring your own safety but also setting a standard for those around you. Remember, safety starts with you.

If you’re unsure of anything, from the ideal fit to how to best maintain and store your safety wear, speak to the team at NECA.