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Chiropractors Tips to Shoveling Snow

dog in the snowIt’s snow time in Vancouver once again!

That means tubing, snow shoeing, building snowmen and the dreaded snow shoveling.

I can’t count how many times I have shoveled snow only to wake up the next day with lower back pain. What I have learned over the years is that it is more of a workout then I ever anticipate in the beginning.

Here are some tips from a chiropractor that you can use to help prevent that post shoveling back pain.

  1. Make sure to warm up and stretch before you begin. Be sure to stretch your back, arms and legs.
  2. Choose a light shovel. Try to avoid metal shovels and opt for a plastic one as they are lighter and easier on your back.
  3. Don’t lift the snow, instead try pushing the snow. Walk and push the snow out of the way with your shovel instead of lifting heavy amounts every couple of minutes. If you must lift some out of the way, don’t forget to lift with your legs and not your back.
  4. Take breaks. Shoveling can be a lot of stress on your back, make sure to give yourself a break every 20-30 minutes.
  5. Keep up with the snow. Try to shovel shortly after a snow fall while the snow is still light and fluffy, rather than waiting until it has settled and is heavier.
  6. Stay hydrated and warm. Make sure to have some water and layer up. This is more exercise then you think it is!

Stay safe out there!

Many of our patients that come in with injuries from snow shoveling have usually injured their lower back out of everything else. If you have had a shoveling injury, don’t wait to get help. Book an appointment with your local chiropractor so you can get back to the fun activities in the snow!

 

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