Avoid back pain this winter by following these simple shoveling tips provided by the physicians of Lancaster NeuroScience & Spine Associates. By following these tips you will reduce the strain on your back and simultaneously promote strength-building in your essential back muscles.
Lift with your legs
Improper snow shoveling is a leading cause of back pain in the winter. Make sure to lift with your legs, not your back, when you’re shoveling this winter. Bend at the knees to avoid putting stress on your lower back. By bending at the knees, and not at the waist you are using your legs to do the lifting, instead of straining your lower back with each shovel.
Avoid the ‘Twist’
It is best to avoid a ‘twisting’ motion when you are tossing snow. Each time you ‘toss & twist’ you put stress on your back. Try to pivot your entire body to face the correct direction prior to moving snow. Your back will thank you. Even though it make take a few extra seconds, it will help save you hours of pain that could result from the ‘toss & twist’ technique.
Pick the right shovel
Picking a properly sized, ergonomic shovel will reduce stress on your back as you avoid painful bending and twisting. Ideally, a shovel with a curved handle and adjustable length works best. If you use an improperly sized or shaped shovel you will continuously put unnecessary strain on your back that could easily be avoided.
Hopefully these simple tips help you get through the winter pain free so you can enjoy the beautiful weather of the Spring and Summer months!