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New study unearths how to reduce the risk of barista injuries… Italian espresso machine manufacturer La Marzocco collaborated with British start-up Clockwork Espresso to fund research into the risk of injury while tamping. The study, carried out by Dr Diane Gregory of Wilfred Laurier University in Waterloo, Canada, found that Clockwork Espresso’s innovative PUSH tamper significantly reduces the risk of injury to baristas and requires a more neutral thoracic and lumbar spine posture.

Pete Southern, founder of Clockwork Espresso and inventor of the PUSH Tamper  said “La Marzocco have a really serious focus on innovation and expanding the coffee community’s knowledge in all areas of the coffee industry. While we were still in the beta testing phase of the product, I was telling them about how we had some evidence that would suggest a considerable health benefit for baristas. We wanted a full independent scientific study to be carried out, but funding it was difficult at that time, so La Marzocco kindly offered to support the study, including paying for it to be published in an open-access journal so that everyone can access it and learn from the research.”

Tamping is known throughout the coffee industry as one of the most injury-prone aspects of a barista’s job. Carpal Tunnel syndrome (or ‘barista wrist’ as it has become known in the industry) has resulted in large injury claims around the world, leaving some baristas having to leave the profession.

Since the world saw PUSH during UK champ Maxwell Colonna Dashwood’s WBC routine in Seattle, its popularity has grown rapidly, now being sold in over 50 countries worldwide. As well as the ergonomic benefit, the tamper also provides absolute consistency across all baristas in a cafe, guaranteeing a perfectly level tamp every time, which is required for perfect espresso.

La Marzocco showcased the tampers alongside their new LEVA espresso machine at HOST in Milan, on 20-24th October 2017 and will be presenting them shortly on occasion of the Seoul Cafe Show (9-12 November).