November 2, 2021
Every year countless people strain their backs doing yard work, and are stuck in pain for days or weeks. Before you start raking and hauling the leaves off the lawn, here are a few tips to avoid common yard work injuries:
- Warm-up: It is very important to participate in light warm-up and cool-down exercises. This will help loosen your muscles and has been shown to decrease the likelihood of injury.
- Reduce strain on your back by using gravity to your advantage when raking.
- Rake downhill. Leaves individually are not heavy, however together they can become tasking. In addition, it is important to tighten your core and to avoid twisting or turning movements.
- Always use a tarp. Raking leaves onto a tarp allows you to avoid bending down and bagging the leaves every minute or two. Which in turn takes a great deal of stress off of your back. When the tarp gets full, drag the tarp over to where you are planning on dumping them.
- Don't overdo it! The #1 reason we see people in our clinic is due to overuse injuries. Do not try to rake all the leaves in your yard in one day. Divide the yard into sections and handle a couple sections a day. Raking is a repetitive movement that can lead to overuse of muscles and cause pain. Take plenty of breaks, drink lots of water, and listen to your body. If your back is screaming at you then listen and rest for the remainder of the day.
I hope this helps you stay pain free. For any questions give us call today! (540) 751-1970