Avoid Injuries While Gardening
by Advice for Saint Francis Rehabilitation Services, Topeka, Kansas
Getting into gardening in the spring may result in back aches and sour muscles. Long term injuries might be tendonitis and carpal tunnel syndrone.
How can you prevent injury?
*Apply sunscreen and insect repellent. Stretch and walk for 10 minutes to loosen muscles.
*Wear hat and gloves and sturdy shoes. Avoid working in the heat of the day.
*Never work through pain. Stop doing what hurts. Alternate difficult tasks with easier ones. To protect and support your back, do abdominal exercises such as crunches, sit-ups, and pelvic tilts.
*Avoid unnecessary twists and turns. Do not bend from the waist only; bend your knees and
swivel your feet. Work below shoulder level.
*Lift with your legs. Get close to the object, square shoulders, bend knees. Stand upright, using thigh and buttocks. Use a wheelbarrow for moving heavy loads, or place the load on a tarp and drag it. Pull bags of soil or mulch onto your thighs, close to your body, then stand up.
*Do easier tasks first to warm up.
*Take a stretch break every 30 minutes. Stay hydrated.