Blocks away from where OSHA commenced its hearings, opponents of the proposal stood next to dozens of binders that make up the regulation and urged OSHA to rethink its approach. "This 1,000-plus page rule and the supporting documentation is a nightmare for both employers, and we would argue, employees," said Barbara Hiden, director of federal affairs, National Soft Drink Association and member of the National Coalition on Ergonomics.

"OSHA's ergonomics rule would force me to become a better doctor than the physicians who treat these injuries and the scientists who research this issue," said Stu McMichael, owner of a small print shop.

"Nowhere within the pages of the proposal does OSHA actually answer these fundamental questions surrounding the issue of ergonomics: How many repetitions are too many? How heavy a lift is too heavy? Or when does a position become awkward?" said Hiden. "That's because OSHA doesn't have those answers, so they have decided to write a regulation forcing employers to figure out what has thus far eluded the entire medical and scientific communities."

The National Coalition on Ergonomics is made up of more than 300 associations and businesses.