With fall and winter come the seasonal chores we’re all accustomed to; however, there is also an increase in the number of injuries associated with raking and shoveling as the weather changes. The good news is that most of these injuries are easily preventable.
These tips will help you remain injury free during fall and winter:
• When lifting, lift with your legs and not your back.
• When raking, you want to pull the rake in with the power of your legs instead of bending and straining your back.
• Never bend and twist at the same time. This is a common cause of injury.
• Don’t bend while lifting. Instead of bending at the back to lift up bags of leaves, snow or other heavy objects, bend your legs and then straighten them to lift, keeping the weight as close to your center of gravity as possible.
• Remember to stretch your spine from time to time. Avoid staying in the same position for too long.
• If you live in an area that requires snow shoveling, make sure to warm up and stretch before you engage in vigorous activity in the cold.
Jeff Booher is a regular contributor for InjuReplay and owner of Peak Physical Therapy and Sports Performance located in Lincoln, Nebraska. Learn more about Jeff and his sports medicine background HERE.