….its beginning to look a lot like ….BACK ACHES everywhere you go, there’s a man with a brace right there, a guy with leg pain there; the achy kind that doesn’t like the snow. ..oh, its beginning….
You know the song. How about we find out how to enjoy the season without the agonies of shoveling snow and having a back ache to boot?
Tips for shoveling snow without pain
- It’s easy, have a good shovel that is of the proper size for you. Go out and look as there are a ton of different sizes and models to choose from. Play around with them in the stores and purchase one that ensures that you will not be stooping over the handle to pick up the snow from your sidewalk and driveway. Try to switch hands and sides of throwing to avoid muscle overuse/soreness.
- When you shovel, remember to put your feet in a stance as though you are entering into a tug of war battle with your knees and hips slightly flexed. This will afford you a stable base of support whereby you will be able to shift your weight forward and backward in order to scoop and pick up snow onto your shovel.
- Most people hurt themselves when tossing the snow off to the side because they TWIST rather than STEP & TURN before they throw. Step and turn? Yes, step and turn towards the direction you are going to toss your snow. Then toss your snow by using the tug of war stance and transfer your weight from the back then to the front foot. You do not need to lean forward at the hip because you are transferring your weight from back to front and tossing the snow off of the shovel.
If you should get sore in the back or shoulders consider some physical therapy to help you out.
Jean McConnell, MS, PT, ATC is the owner of Pinnacle Health Concepts physical therapy located in Boardman, OH. You may reach her at 330-480-9362.