Shoveling Tips to Save your Spine

We are currently in the dead of winter and snow is inevitable.  Shoveling can often lead injuries if it’s not done with proper ergonomics. Here are a few simple tips to help you avoid those injuries.

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  • Before even starting the shoveling process, make sure you stretch some. Warming up the muscles in your arms and legs will save them from injury lifting and moving the heavy weight.
  • If you’re able to, just push the snow. This will reduce the strain on your body. If you have to lift it, make sure to use your legs and not your back.
  • When lifting, also keep your back straight. Never bend over to lift because this will strain your back. Move down into a squatting position and then lift with your legs.
  • Make sure to never twist when throwing snow. The motion of bending and twisting puts your spine in the most vulnerable position; possibly setting you up for disc injury.
  • Stay hydrated while you’re working outside and take regular breaks.
  • If there’s someone available, have them help. The job will get done twice as fast and there will be half the amount of stress put on your body.

Follow these tips and your spine will thank you later!

Dr. Meghan

 

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