As the old adage goes, April showers bring spring flowers. With the nicer weather, you may have the urge to get your yard or garden in order. The bending and reaching involved in yard and garden work may get your body moving in ways you haven't moved in a while and pain, discomfort and even injury are common.
Back pain is a one of the most common culprits at this time of year and over 85% of the population will be affected by it at some point in their lives.
Before you get your hands in the dirt, prevent low back injury with some of these simple tips
Carry several small loads of dirt/debris, instead of struggling with one large load
When lifting, keep loads close to your body and use a wide base of support
Teamwork also makes loads lighter and the work fun
Use a step stool to sit on when doing low level work to limit low back strain
Select the right tools
Purchase a watering can with a long spout to allow access to your plants without having to hold heavy loads away from your body
Consider using knee pads or portable cushions to protect your joints when kneeling
Stretch before and after gardening
Make sure to take frequent breaks and alternate activities to ease muscle strain
Prevent sunburn and heatstroke
Sunburn can start within 15-30 minutes of direct exposure
Garden early in the morning or late in the day
Remember to use sunscreen and drink plenty of fluids
Wear a hat to reduce dehydration and burns to the top of the head
If you would like further information on a general stretching program, or if you experience persistent pain after gardening or other activities, our clinicians are here to help. Check out our locations page to find a clinic near you or book online.