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Monday Moves: MBM2 The Mini-Break-Minute Series Continues

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Monday, May 23, 2016

It is often challenging to find a proper time and location to perform a stretching routine during the workday. We are pleased to offer a MineFit solution to the this challenge with Mini-Break-Minutes (MBM’s). Workers can embrace the MBM as a sitting break or a standing activity, depending on how it best compliments the daily rigors of their job.

When you can’t get up and about to do your standing stretch and warm-up, or if you are in the middle of a task during the workday, perform your MBM's to improve focus, increase circulation, keep muscles and joints healthy, and sustain the mind and body.

This week we present the second MBM: Overhead Breathing

MBM2: Raise your arms over your head and extend your fingertips, splaying your hands as far apart as you can, then turn Right and Left 4x each side, taking a big breath on each turn.

Why?: This move opens your ribcage to get more air into your lungs. It helps relieve neck and upper back pain, and improves blood flow to the arms and the brain.

Remember: Performing an action which reverses daily worksite repetitive movement patterns reduces chronic pain and injury, and is statistically proven to improve overall worker productivity. Set an alarm for every two hours of your work shift to perform this MBM.






Tags:  mbm  MineFit  mini-break-minute  Monday Moves  monica pampell  Stretch Series 

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WEBINAR: Fighting the Food Coma

Posted By Darrell Smith, Saturday, May 21, 2016
WEBINAR: Fighting the Food Coma

Date and Time
Thursday, May 26, 2016 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM EDT

Register by Clicking Here

As part of the MineFit Q2 initiative, we concentrate on Focus and Attention. In this webinar we will examine the Glycemic Cycle, which refers to the effect of blood sugar levels on physical energy and cognitive alertness. The body and mind tend to perform optimally when blood sugar levels are kept relatively consistent (in addition to keeping body weight and diabetes risk in check). During the development of the MineFit program, we theorized that that there is a likely trend in injuries within the mining industry that would correlate with time of day. As a result, the IMA-NA obtained time-of-day injury data for the U.S. mining industry since the year 2000 and confirmed that the highest rates of injury occurred just before and after lunchtime: times of the day when blood sugar levels might be compromised. The Glycemic Cycle is indeed a silent adversary in the battle to combat mine injuries and fatalities. Join us to learn how to fight the food coma and keep workers' focus and health preserved throughout their shift. 

Presenter: Monica Pampell, MineFit Head Coach

Remember, if you can not attend, you should still register so that you will receive the recording.

Cost: $39/person for IMA members 
$69/person for non-members 

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MineFit Tidbit: Fighting Fatigue (8 Common Causes of and Solutions for Fatigue)

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Friday, May 20, 2016

The MineFit Q2 initiative, Attention and Focus, has presented a variety of information, research and applications for physical activity and nutrition, aiming to improve focus, attention, mood, productivity, morale, and physical state of being. 

This week for our MineFit Tidbit, we turn to identifying and curing fatigue, which can present itself from a wide base of possible root causes.  Here are the top identifiers of fatigue, and solutions for a more restful night, and a better, more productive day.  


1. The Obvious: lack of sleep.  

Solution:  Turn off all TV’s and devices 1 hour before bedtime, to reduce serotonin production in the brain and help induce a better night’s rest.

2. Sleep Apnea: this condition is marked by brief interruptions in breathing, causing tiny wake-ups throughout the night.  

Solution: Lose weight and stop smoking, and go to a sleep clinic to check for this condition.

3. Lack of Food Fuel: eating too little causes fatigue; however, you might be getting the wrong foods, which cause abnormal fluctuations in blood sugar and lead to fatigue and lack of focus:  

Solution: Always eat breakfast and be sure there is protein added to each of your meals, especially breakfast. 

4. Depression: this disorder is commonly thought of as emotional; however, it has many physical manifestations, namely fatigue and headache.  

Solution:  Take an online screening test and try to use lifestyle habits to improve your mood and positively affect fatigue.  

5. Diabetes: wherever you are on the spectrum of diabetes and insulin resistance, this causes a malfunction in the ability to convert food to energy, resulting in fatigue and low energy, despite eating enough food.  

Solution: In most cases, diabetes can be treated with lifestyle changes, namely in the form of cardiovascular exercise and monitoring blood sugar. 

6. Dehydration:  fatigue is commonly a result of dehydration, especially for people who don’t engage in physical activity and thus don’t perceive the need for fluids.  

Solution:  If you are thirsty, you are already fatigued, so have two cups of water per hour and monitor urine frequency and color.  

7. Shift Work Sleep Disorder: working nights or rotating shifts such that your schedule changes, can disrupt your internal clock and lead to chronic fatigue.  

Solution: Limit your exposure to sunlight when you need to rest, keep your room very quiet and cool, and do not use devices when you are trying to settle down to sleep.  

8. Heart Disease:  when fatigue strikes everyday activities such as cleaning the house or gardening, it can be an sign of incoming heart disease, or the slow blockage of the arteries and blood flow in the body.  

Solution: Lifestyle changes, mainly in the form of cardiovascular exercise and weight management, curb heart disease before it gets out of hand.

Tags:  fatigue  health  MineFit  safety and health 

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IMA-NA Members Visit Capitol Hill

Posted By Chris Greissing, Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Last week, IMA-NA held our annual Washington, DC, Spring meeting.  One of the primary purposes of the meeting is to get our members in front of the decision makers on Capitol Hill.  This year, our members made dozens of visits over a day and a half to key offices educating Members of Congress and their staffs on the need to maintain the percentage depletion tax deduction in any tax reform effort in 2017.   Natural resources companies, such as IMA member companies, under current law, are allowed to claim as a deduction for depletion, a percentage of the gross income from their properties.  This percentage varies depending on the type of mineral.  The deduction recognizes the unique nature of resources investments, which require significant financial commitments to long-term projects where the resource itself is depleted over time.  It allows our companies to deliver a competitive product at a low margin.  We need to maintain this deduction because it allows companies to invest in land they need for future mineral reserves in order to keep their businesses sustainable; to make necessary capital expenditures; and allows the companies to make growth-oriented investments.  IMA-NA staff will continue to work diligently on this effort throughout the year.

The other major issue our members discussed included the effort underway to reduce the federal royalty rate for soda ash mined on federal land from 6% to 2% for a period of five years.  Market conditions have made this legislation vital for the industry. The combination of the strong dollar, currency manipulation in China and the subsidies provided by China to their manufacturers is negatively impacting our ability to be competitive in the global market place.  Senator John Barrasso (R- WY) has introduced S. 2031, the American Soda Ash Competitiveness Act.  The legislation is a bi-partisan bill with 5 Democrats and 5 Republicans supporting this effort.  On the House side, Congressman Paul Cook (R-CA) has introduced a companion bill, HR 1992, which has passed out of the House Natural Resources Committee on a bi-partisan vote.  IMA-NA is continuing to work with key members in the House and Senate to ensure that this vital bill moves forward this session of Congress.



Searles Valley Minerals President Avinash Puri and Director Government Affairs and Public Relations Arzell Hale meet with House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy

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Monday Moves: Introducing the Mini-Break-Minute Series!

Posted By Darrell Smith, Monday, May 16, 2016

It is often challenging to find a proper time and location to perform a stretching routine during the workday. We are pleased to offer a solution to the this challenge with Mini-Break-Minutes (MBM’s):

When you can’t get up and about to do your standing stretch and warm-up, or if you are in the middle of a task during the workday, perform your MBM's to improve focus, increase circulation, keep muscles and joints healthy, and sustain the mind and body.

This week we present the first of three MBM’s to be compiled as a set of complementary movement patterns, aiming to off-set typical workday actions (or, the lack thereof!).   

Performing an action which reverses daily worksite repetitive movement patterns reduces chronic pain and injury, and is statistically proven to improve overall worker productivity.  

Instructions:  Set an alarm for every two hours of your work shift to perform this MBM.

MBM1: While seated, lift the leg up and down, using hip and thigh to move the leg. Keep your toes pointed up for 12 repetitions and pointed down for 12 more. Switch legs. Keep stomach long and firm.  
Optional: Extend the leg out straight in front of you, squeezing your kneecap and rolling the ankle to loosen your foot.  



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MineFit TidBit: Crack an Egg! (And, Be Well Fed)

Posted By Darrell Smith, Friday, May 13, 2016

Today's Minefit tidbit highlights the importance of eggs to energy maintenance, dispels myths about the egg as a cholesterol "villain" and illustrates the link between eating eggs and weight maintenance. 

Eggs and bacon are a bad breakfast. Cereal and milk are better. 
Eating eggs and bacon, with the fat strained off of the meat and eggs cooked without butter, is far and beyond a superior breakfast in relation to cereal alone. Not only does the meal provide over 20 grams of protein, it will sustain energy for hours. Cereal is consumed and burned within two hours, leaving you hungry and unfocused, craving caffeine and carbohydrates prior to lunchtime. 

Eggs are bad for you because they have cholesterol. 
The latest USDA guidelines highlight eggs as being acceptable and positive for consumption, and cholesterol as "no longer of concern." Instead, you should focus on reducing the amount of saturated fat that you eat to almost none, because this stimulates the formation of fat which sticks in the arteries.  

Once you lose weight, you have to eat a lot less to keep it off.
Small, frequent meals encourage weight loss and enhanced weight maintenance. A lesser known piece of nutritional knowledge is that research on individuals who lose weight and continue to eat eggs for breakfast at least three mornings a week maintain their weight loss significantly more than those who did not consume eggs for breakfast. 

So, crack an egg, and have a great weekend!

And checkout this egg-cellent summary on the benefits of eggs:

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IMA-NA Recognizes 5 Members for Exemplary Safety Records

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Wednesday, May 11, 2016

As is tradition, IMA-NA takes the opportunity at the Spring Meeting to recognize our Members with exemplary safety records during the annual Safety Recognition Awards Luncheon. This afternoon, as an industry, we had the pleasure to roll out our new awards, which take into account the size of the mine sites as well as the companies operating the sites. As IMA-NA members are leaders in the field of safety and health within the mining industry it is easy to celebrate their achievements and records. We are pleased to have the opportunity to recognize the following Member companies who had the best safety records over the last year.  Of particular note is Atlanta Sand & Supply Company's topping both the Company and Mine Safety Awards in the Small Company Category.  Atlanta Sand & Supply's President was on hand to accept both awards.  Ed Flynn, President of Tronox Alkali and current Chairman of IMA-NA's Board handed out the awards to the recipients. Below are the five companies and six awards handed out this afternoon.


2015 Company Safety Awards 

Lowest Total Injury Rate (Small Company Category): 

Atlanta Sand & Supply Company


(Pictured: Jeff Avant, Ed Flynn)


Lowest Total Injury Rate (Medium Company Category): 

Nugent Sand Company

Lowest Total Injury Rate (Large Company Category):



(Pictured: Rankin Hobbs, Ed Flynn)


2015 Mine Safety Awards

Lowest Total Injury Rate (Small Company Category)

Atlanta Sand & Supply Company


(Pictured: Jeff Avant, Ed Flynn)


Lowest Total Injury Rate (Medium Company Category)

Hi-Crush Augusta LLC

(Pictured: Jeff Johnson, Ed Flynn)


Lowest Total Injury Rate (Large Company Category)

Unimin Corporation - Schoolhouse Quartz Plant


(Pictured: Andy O'Brien, Ed Flynn)

Tags:  award  safety  safety & health  safety awards  spring meeting 

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Monday Moves: Super On-Site Stretch Full Series Posted

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Monday, May 9, 2016

We are pleased to annouce this week's Monday Move, in conjunction with the IMA-MA Spring Meeting in Washington, DC, is the culmination and product distribution representing:

  • Seven weeks of Monday Move stretches
  • Integration of the MineFit photography project
  • Thoughts and feedback on easiest implementation on-site, both in paper-form and electronically, to heads to operation, leaders in health and safety, and to workers themselves 

Super On-Site Stretching Series Intro:

MineFit has developed a basic set of seven stretching moves which would be an excellent start for employees to use on-site. They are easy to present to employees one-by-one at toolbox talks or other meetings. Start by doing them yourself, and see if your site can make them a habit. We are open to your feedback and ideas on ways to utilize the MineFit tools on-site.  

Please download the attached document and distribute to your employees, plant managers, HR team, and heads of training and safety.  We hope you can use them provide questions and feedback.  If you would like an extended version of each of the stretches, available as single-page documents to be sent weekly or posted on internal AV systems, please send a direct mail and we can transfer them to you.  

Download File (PDF)

Tags:  MineFit  Monday Moves  monica pampell  safety and health 

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Company News: Kevin Peterson Receives Award from Kansas State University

Posted By Ariel Hill-Davis, Friday, May 6, 2016

Last week Vortex's Kevin Peterson, received the Outstanding Service Award from Kansas State University’s (KSU) Department of Grain Science and Industry. The award recognizes Kevin's work with KSU students, allowing them to have hands on experience and exposure with Vortex equipment.  The work includes, an annual visit of Vortex's Mobile Display Unit (which we were fortunate enough to experience at our Technology Workshop in San Diego) and a student trip to Vortex's manufacturing facility. Kevin and Vortex's support of KSU's Department of Grain Science and Industry is an excellent example of community engagement and industry investment in the next generation.  IMA-NA's Associate Members bring a wealth of knowledge and experience past their role in our industry. IMA-NA is always happy to recognize all our members' contributions to their communities and the world around them.

To read more about Kevin's Outstanding Service Award click here

Tags:  award  community  community involvement  education  Kevin Peterson  outreach  Vortex Valves 

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MineFit TidBit: Stand Alone Stretching Programs are Less Effective than Total Injury Prevention Training Programs

Posted By Darrell Smith, Friday, May 6, 2016

Stand-alone Stretching Programs are shown in recent research, using populations of 400+ employees, to be less effective than an integration with a Total Injury Prevention Training Program...

The benefit of stretching as it relates to reduced injury rates and musculoskeletal disease (MSD) is somewhat controversial. This is because no single approach or solution has been shown to have an overwhelming effect on reducing injuries. New research shows that a stretching regimen/suggested “routine” is not enough. A structured employee stretching program, combined with a more comprehensive ergonomics process, has a greater positive impact in reducing MSDs. 

In practice, this means the integration of the “human factor” in ergonomic and safety training programs is critical to successful injury prevention. A combination of “quality metrics” such as employee feedback surveys to ensure positive results, and a commitment ("buy-in”) from management and leadership on-site are KEY to injury and MSD prevention. 

Integrate MineFit Stretching and Monday Moves to ensure a healthy workforce.  After all…one third of your ergonomic design is the Human Factor!  

Also, please distribute an Employee Interests Survey {see attached} at your next proctored training, and mail the forms back to the IMA-MA office to analyze data and create a summary for you.  



Data Sources:
Hess, J. et al.; "Stretching at Work for Injury Prevention: Issues, Evidence, and Recommendations," Applied Occupational and Environmental Hygiene, Vol. 18 No. 5, 2003.
Fenety, et al.; "Short Term Effects of Workstation Exercises on Musculoskeletal Discomfort and Postural Changes in Seated Video Display Unit Workers," Physical Therapy, Vol. 82, No. 6, June 2002.

Download File (PDF)

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