When it comes to working around your home during the winter, few things can lead to a lower back injury as quickly as shoveling snow. If you live in an area that sees a significant snow accumulation each winter, you may find yourself shoveling for hours over the course of the winter — and putting the health of your lower back in jeopardy with each movement. You can visit your local chiropractic clinic for a back adjustment after an injury, but the best approach is always to take the preventative steps you can to lessen your risk of hurting yourself in the first place. Here are some techniques to keep in mind.
Use The Right Shovel
If you're using a shovel that is too short, you'll put your back at risk because you'll be bending over too far. It's a good investment to find a shovel that is long enough and comfortable to use. Many stores sell ergonomically shaped shovels that are designed to reduce the risk of lower back pain. You should also consider the size of the mouth of your shovel. If it's too large, you may be tempted to lift large and heavy loads of snow, thus straining your back. In some cases, a smaller mouth may remind you to take small shovel loads of snow.
Monitor The Weather
Keeping tabs on the weather is always a good idea when snow removal is one of your jobs. Pay special attention to when the forecast indicates that the temperature will rise. When it gets warmer, snow will often get heavier because of the water it contains. Conversely, snow is often light and fluffy on cooler days. If it has just snowed and it's cold outside but the forecast is calling for warmer temperatures in the next day or two, it would be wise to shovel while it's still cold.
Think Of Your Feet
Caring for your feet may not seem to have a link with shoveling-related back care, but your traction during this task is important. If you aren't able to grip the ground, you may be at risk of slipping and falling, which could jar your back. One way to lessen this risk is to buy a pair of snow/ice grips and mount them to your winter boots. These products have small studs that improve your traction on slippery surfaces, thus helping you shovel the snow with more traction and less risk of falling.
For more tips, contact a company like ULTIMATE HEALTH- A Complete Wellness Center.