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The following article was published in Your Health Magazine. Our mission is to empower people to live healthier.
Alicia Kovach, DC
Snow Shoveling Safety
Kovach Chiropractic & Wellness Center
. http://kovachchiropractic.com/

Snow Shoveling Safety

As winter is upon us and we have already experienced our first snow it is very important to discuss shoveling safety. By following a few simple tips you are far less likely to be injured from the excessive stress that is placed on the spine.

The technique that should be used to ensure you do not injure your back is to make sure that when you lift the shovel that you tighten your abdominal muscles and do not hold your breath. Make sure that you bend using your knees and not your back. Wearing shoes/boots with slip resistant soles will help you avoid slips and falls.

Tips for Shoveling Safety

  • Shovel only fresh snow. If the snow is wet and packed down it can be very heavy so lift a little at a time and try to push the snow
  • Choose a shovel that is right for you. The shovel should be chest high and have a rocker bottom. Try to use a smaller shovel to make sure that you are not lifting too much snow
  • When gripping the shovel make sure that your hands are at least shoulder width apart and that your feet are shoulder width apart
  • Do not shovel after eating or while smoking
  • If you have a history of heart trouble make sure that you have your doctors permission before shoveling
  • Warm up before you shovel and stretch when you are done
  • Pace yourself! Don’t work to the point of exhaustion. If you run out of breath take a break and if you feel tightness in your chest stop immediately
  • Dress warmly. The extremities such as the nose, ears, hands and feet need extra attention

If you or anyone you know is experiencing or experiences back or neck pain this winter make sure you visit your chiropractor for an evaluation and treatment. Have a safe and healthy winter!

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