With the cold months and grueling winter tasks on their way, we begin to feel our bones hurt and spines ache. Here are some useful tips to help you maintain spinal health during the harsh winter weather:
- When shoveling your driveway:
- Be sure to stretch properly before and after
- Select the right shovel
- Be sure the shovel has a sharp blade, is lightweight, and the correct length for your reach
- Lifting techniques
- Push the snow when possible and only lift when absolutely necessary
- Bend with the hips and knees, never with the back
- Use your abs when lifting, and don't twist your spine when shifting the snow
- Listen to your body
- When you feel your body getting tired, take a break. Don't push it!
- Getting around town
- Be sure to allow yourself plenty of time to get to your destination so that you aren’t rushing in icy conditions. Also, don't run to catch the bus, use handrails when walking up stairs, and if your vehicle gets stuck, make sure at least three people are pushing.
- Sport proper footwear
- Wear stable shoes with a reliable tread, or use attachable footwear products to provide better traction on ice.
- Be careful with your load
- Be sure to keep your balance by distributing loads on both sides of your body. And if you feel as though you cannot safely carry the load, be sure to make more than one trip.
- Remember to exercise
- Even though its winter, be sure to stay active. One key to spine health is having strong muscles and core strength.
Always check with your physician to see if these tips are safe to follow based on your health history. However, if you experience an injury, call First State Spine to schedule an appointment today!