We here in the Physical Therapy Department obviously work on body mechanics to help resolve and prevent injury. During the spring, summer and fall months we really enjoy our outdoor time but come winter, it may be another story (excluding those ski bums). There are ways to get in more physical activity at work and home that does not require any equipment. Also, living in our cold environment, daily winter activities can cause injury such as shoveling snow and carrying wood. Here are some helpful hints to help avoid injury during this winter season and tips on how to stay active.
When shoveling snow:
- Lift lighter loads of snow vs trying to move the whole driveway in one scoop
- Do not rotate at trunk when throwing snow off shovel → move your legs in direction that you want the snow to go
- Bend at the hips and knees vs the back when scooping the snow
When carrying in wood:
- Lift with legs and not your back (bend at hips and knees vs leaning over to pick up wood)
- Stand with feet shoulder width apart
- Keep back straight
- Get close to the wood that you are picking up
- Avoid overloading your arms with too much weight
Tips for Staying Active During the Winter
- Take the stairs at work when able
- If able, take a short walk to the break room and back every 30 minutes
- Park further out in the parking lot
- Stretch in the morning to get your body awake and ready to go
- Play with pets at home
- Shovel snow or carrying in wood (thank goodness you now have tips to prevent injury)
HERE’S TO A HAPPY AND HEALTHY WINTER SEASON!
*If all else fails, Valley-Wide Physical Therapy is here to help you get ready for the warmer weather!