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Gardening Ergonomics: Stay injury free this spring

Sprucing up the garden is a mentally therapeutic activity that can be tasking on the body physically. Proper ergonomics help prevent serious issues from occurring, so you do not miss out on the spring season! It is important to be organized, warm up, and utilize the right tools to maximize injury prevention.

Gardening Ergonomics - Nashville TN - East End Chiropractic

GET ORGANIZED: Have everything ready before diving into the the flower beds. Make sure you have your tools organized and a plan to navigate through the gardens.

  • Tool Organizer: Keep large tools organized in a tool stand, umbrella holder, or golf bag! This will keep tools from getting tangled or having to bend over to pick them up off the ground. Keep smaller tools in a bin with wheels to make it easier to roll them around the whole yard.
  • Step stool: If you are planning to do work on plants that are larger and grow above your waist, use a step stool. Do not raise tools overhead.  Try to keep all your work around waist height.

WARM UP: Be sure to prepare yourself for physical activity. Active stretches are the best way to mobilize joints!

  • WINDMILLS: Extend your arms out to your sides. Rotate one arm clockwise and the other counterclockwise. This will encourage shoulder mobility, thoracic extension, and relieve tension through chest.
  • SIDE LUNGES: Stand with your feet spread apart. Lean toward the right by bending the knee and straightening the left. Switch sides and repeat. This will increase hip mobility!

ERGONOMICS: Utilize tools that work best for you!

  • Tools with longer handles make it easier to reach areas in the garden without putting stress on the back.
  • Hand tools with a wider grip will decrease the tension in the hands to manage smaller, tedious tasks.

POSTURE: Make sure to move your body around properly to avoid excess strain and prevent injury.

  • One Knee, One Foot: Bend one knee to relax on the ground and put the other foot in front of you, similar to a lunge position, keeping the back stabilized. Many people injure their back by bending over all day. Knee injuries also occur by kneeling on both knees for too long.
  • Proper Lifting: Remember to bend at the knees and hips, utilizing your gluteal muscles for support. Keep your back neutral and braced. Do not lean forward excessively to avoid flexion injury to the low back.

Remember to always stay hydrated when being active! Be sure to let us know if you have any questions or concerns about your gardening posture. We are happy to share preventative advice and help you stay healthy and active!

By on May 23rd, 2014 | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Comments Off on Gardening Ergonomics: Stay injury free this spring