Tips to Stay Safe in your Yard or Garden

Spring is the season to start sprucing up your yard or garden. This is also the time of the year when injuries can happen if lifting is not done properly. It is important to keep in mind proper body mechanics while working with a shovel, wheelbarrow, rake, etc.

Here are a few helpful tips to keep you safe while working in your yard or garden:planting flowers

  • Plan ahead. Determine what you need (tools, gloves, wheelbarrow, etc.), and decide if you need help. Is the job too big for one person?
  • Check the weather. Try to work during the coolest part of the day to prevent dehydration. Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated, and take short breaks.
  • Wear sunscreen – even if it is a cloudy day!  Also, wear protective clothing (long pants or sleeves may be necessary if you are working near poisonous plants).
  • Keep your back straight, and bend your knees when you are lifting, carrying or using a rake or shovel.
  • Pick objects off the ground by bending with your legs, not your waist. When lifting objects, try to keep the object as close to your body as possible to avoid back pain and injuries. The closer to your body, the more stable and easier it is to control the object.
  • Avoid twisting your trunk when lifting or carrying. Keep your nose over your toes!
  • Ask for help or try to downsize heavy objects.

If you find yourself sore for a few days after yard work, ask your primary care provider for a physical therapy evaluation. A physical therapist will do an assessment and teach you exercises to keep your core strong, as well as the proper body mechanics of lifting to prevent any injuries.

Learn more about how Good Shepherd treats back pain quickly and non-surgically by calling 1-888-44-REHAB or request an appointment.

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