Manual Handling Course

This Manual Handling Course will provide learners with the knowledge and skills to assess and lift loads within their own capabilities to minimise the risk of a back injury.

The Manual Handling Course can be tailored to suit individual workplaces. The course is highly interactive and involves both theory and practical sessions. The learner is assessed by the instructor in safe handling techniques and the principles of safe moving and handling.

Over 30% of accidents reported to HSA annually result from manual handling. 50% of people who are off work with back pain have a recurrence within one year. 5% of back pain injuries can lead to prolonged disability. It’s equally common among males and females.

The definition of Manual Handling can be found in Guide to the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (General Application) Regulations 2007. Chapter 4 of Part 2: Manual Handling of Loads.

We also offer a Public Manual Handling Courses in our training centre in Longford and online. Please note that the online course is an awareness course only,  you will also need further practical training, please get in touch with us to arrange this.

The Manual Handling Course can also be delivered which blended learning.

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Course Aims
Course Objectives
Who Should Attend This Course?

All staff who perform tasks involving manual handling at their place of work. Regulation 68 of the 2007 Regulations defines ‘manual handling of loads’ as:

any transporting or supporting of a load by one or more employees and includes lifting, putting down, pushing, pulling, carrying, or moving a load, which, by reason of its characteristics or of unfavourable ergonomic conditions, involves risk, particularly of a back injury, to employees’

Pre-Course Requirements
  • English is the language in which training is delivered, and learners must have fluency in English
  • Please let us know if learners have any specific learner requirements
  • Learners should wear appropriate clothing for an interactive and practical course
Course Programme
  • Safety Health & Welfare at Work Act 2005
  • General Application Regulations 2007
  • Ergonomics
  • Musculoskeletal system
  • Anatomy, structure & function of the spine
  • Posture
  • 8 principles of safe handling
  • Safe handling techniques
  • Maintaining fitness
  • Practical manual handling techniques
  • Practical test

All our tutors hold a minimum QQI Level 8 in their subject matter, a Train the Trainer QQI Level 6 or higher.

Training Methods
  • Classroom-based power-point presentation
  • Demonstration
  • Practice

Full participation in the course is required to receive certification


3 Year Phoenix STS Certification

Maximum Number of Learners



3 hours

Frequently Asked Questions

A registered training provider is an individual, or a company/organisation, which has agreed their quality assurance procedures with the QQI and is registered with the QQI to provide training courses.

There is no set requirement, but it is recommended that refresher training should be provided at intervals not more than every three years or where there is a change in work practices resulting in the introduction of a new system of work related to manual handling or use of equipment to handled loads.

In simple terms, the main thing is a risk assessment, though there are other considerations:

  • Firstly, does the load need to be moved at all?
  • If so, can it be moved mechanically?
  • For example by using a handling aid, such as a pallet truck, an electric or hand-powered hoist, or a conveyor?

If manual lifting is the only option then there are a number of things that can be done to reduce the risk, including;

  • Making the load smaller or lighter and easier to lift
  • Breaking up large consignments into more manageable loads
  • Modifying the workstation to reduce carrying distances, twisting movements, or the lifting of things from floor level or from above shoulder height,
  • Improving the environment – e.g better lighting, flooring or air temperature can sometimes make manual Handling easier and safer
  • Ensuring the person doing the lifting has been trained to lift as safely as possible

The law does not identify a maximum weight limit. It places duties on employers to manage or control the risk; measures to take to meet this duty will vary depending on the circumstances of the task. Things to be considered will include the individual carrying out the handling operation, e.g strength, fitness, underlying medical conditions, the weight to be lifted and distance to be carried, the nature of the load or the postures to be adopted or the availability of equipment to facilitate the lift.

There is no universally safe maximum weight for any load, however, there are varying degrees of risk.

Although training can be important in raising awareness and reducing risk, it should not be assumed that training alone will ensure safe manual handling. It should be supplemented with monitoring and reviews of procedures to ensure that the training is understood and being applied. Reporting problems such as unsafe working conditions or accidents need to be reinforced by good supervision.
Training should cover:

  • Manual handling risk factors and how injuries can occur
  • How to carry out safe manual handling including good handling technique
  • Appropriate systems of work for the individual’s tasks and environment
  • Use of mechanical aids
  • Practical work to allow the trainer to identify and put right anything the trainee is not doing safely

There is no single correct way to lift. The technique for lifting will depend on many things, such as the weight and size of the item. For example, it would be easier to pick up something that is boxed and has handholds than something awkwardly shaped or where the weight is unevenly distributed. The content of any training in good handling technique should be tailored to the particular situation or individual circumstances under which the manual handling takes place. However, HSE has published guidance which contains illustrations of good handling practice.

Chapter 4 of Part 2: Manual Handling of Loads requires employers to take appropriate steps to provide general indications and, where it is reasonably practicable to do so, precise information on the weight of each load, and the heaviest side of any load whose centre of gravity is not positioned centrally.

The first step required by the Regulations is that employers should, so far as is reasonably practicable, avoid the need for their employees to carry out manual handling operations that involve a risk of injury. If this is not reasonably practicable then the risks to employees of the manual handling operations carried out in the normal course of their work should be assessed and reduced.

To meet the provisions of Regulation you;

  • Only need to label a load if there is a risk of injury and it is reasonably practicable to do so
  • Do not have to provide this information if the effort involved in doing so would be much greater than any health and safety benefits that might result
  • Should reduce risky manual handling operations by providing lifting aids, splitting loads and telling people not to carry several items at once
  • Could ask manufacturers and suppliers to mark weights (and, if relevant, information about the heaviest side) on loads if this can be done easily

Obviously, they are not expected to label the person with their weight. However, the weight of the patient should form part of the risk assessment and be recorded and communicated to staff as part of the patient’s moving and handling plan. If their weight is not available, then an informed estimate should be made taking into account their size and information from others, including the patient. Their weight is only one aspect of the risk assessment and there are many other factors to take into account when moving and handling an individual, including the use of transfer and lifting aids.

It would not be practical to weigh and mark the weight on each animal, but the weight of an adult sheep will not vary hugely within a particular breed. So you can give handlers a good idea of the weights involved when you train them about handling techniques. Manual handling of large animals will require a full risk assessment, as there are several hazards involved.

Fire Industry Association of Ireland

About Us

Phoenix STS Ltd t/s Phoenix Safety Training Services provides bespoke first aid, health and safety, fire safety training, and consulting services countrywide to meet our client’s needs. By offering a systematic professional approach through the integration of theoretical and practical tailored programmes, incorporating your training policies and organisational goals, we guarantee compliance and ensure a safer working environment. We also offer a wide range of  RoSPAIATPIFEIIRSM & CPD approved courses; and have a retail business sourcing and supplying specialist evacuation and training equipment.