5 Safety Tips for Gardeners

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Some may consider gardening a sport. It may not be a competitive sport (unless you’re competing with your neighbor for who can grow the biggest tomato), but nonetheless; it requires physical activity to perform and therefore may be considered a “sport” to serious enthusiasts. Digging, pulling weeds, adding mulch, and raking can all make you feel like you’ve had a workout at the gym, so it’s essential to use the following safety precautions to prevent injuries.

SAFETY TIP #1 - WARM UP

Take a few minutes to warm up the muscles you’ll be using. Do a short, brisk walk and then lightly stretch your shoulders, back, legs, arms, and wrists. If you need inspiration, consider these two stretches:

Wrist Flexor Stretch
Corner Pectoral Stretch

SAFETY TIP #2 – USE CORRECT POSTURE

Back pain is a common ailment in gardeners, so be mindful of your posture at all times, whether you’re standing or kneeling. When lifting, bend at your knees and keep your back straight. Imagine that your spine has been strapped to a broomstick. Do not bend at your waist or twist your torso. Keep the load you are carrying close to your body.

SAFETY TIP #3 – SWITCH UP YOUR TASKS

Vary your tasks often so that you are not holding the same position for prolonged periods. Walk around and stretch a little in between tasks to help prevent stiffness and improve your circulation.

SAFETY TIP #4 – USE THE RIGHT TOOLS

If you’re using a rake that is too short for your height, you’ll be forced to bend over excessively and cause yourself some back pain. If you need to bend down frequently, consider purchasing kneepads or a mat.

SAFETY TIP #5 –DRINK WATER

Staying hydrated should always be a priority, and it’s especially important when you’re out in the sun doing physical activity. Have a drink of water at least every 15-20 minutes.

If you feel any pain after a day of gardening, apply ice to the affected area. If you still have discomfort after 24- 48 hours, give us a call to schedule a check-up. Happy Gardening!

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“Dr.

Dr. Mike Urban's experience in sport performance training, cardiovascular rehabilitation, and neuromusculoskeletal chiropractic disciplines have been achieved through field experience and extensive education that includes training through Chapel, McMurtrie and Bartlett Chiropractic Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Clinic in Chesterfield, Missouri. Dr. Urban checks his email daily and welcomes any questions, comments, or inquiries to info@spineandsportsclinic.com

Posted on June 10, 2019 and filed under everyday, Dr. Urban Recommends.