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Snow Shoveling is one of the more common causes of back injuries during the winter months. However, this type of injury is preventable if you know the best ways to remove snow without straining the back.
The following snow removal tips can help you to avoid low back injuries and pain during the snowy winter season.
An ergonomic snow shovel can help take some of the effort out of snow removal chores.
Cold, tight muscles are more prone to injury than warmed up, flexible muscles. Do your back a favor by warming up for five to ten minutes before shoveling or any strenuous activity.
Whenever possible, push the snow to one side rather than lifting it. When lifting the snow shovel is necessary, make sure to use ergonomic lifting techniques:
When gripping the shovel, keep your hands about 12 inches apart to provide greater stability and minimize the chances of injuring your low back.
Shoveling small amounts of snow frequently is less strenuous than shoveling a large pile at once.
Slippery conditions while shoveling can lead to slipping and/or falls and strains that can injure your back.
When used correctly, a snow blower can put less stress on your low back than shoveling. Avoid stressing your back by using the power of your legs to push the snow blower while keeping your back straight and knees bent.
Keeping these guidelines in mind during the winter season will lessen the chances of developing new back problems or worsening your low back pain while shoveling, and hopefully make your winter a healthier and more enjoyable experience.
Credit: Snow Shoveling Techniques to Prevent Low Back Injuries By Peter J. Schubbe, DC
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On the fourth week of care my pain was gone and I had more energy to do things.