5 WAYS TO STAY SAFE DURING A MOVE
Moving from your home is not easy. From having to pack all of your things, to loading them into a truck only to have to unload them and unpack in your new home, it can be an exhausting and, if one is not careful, dangerous experience. Here are five tips to help keep you safe when moving those heavy and awkward items.
1. Lift with your legs: The advice to lift with your legs may seem like a tired cliché, but time and time again physical therapists evaluate patients who used their backs to lift something heavy and have been in pain ever since. Concurrent bending and twisting of the lower back place you at the greatest risk of injuries like bulging discs and herniation. By squatting or lunging over the object to be lifted while keeping a straight back and your chest up you greatly reduce the stress placed on the tissues of the lower back.
2. Use proper equipment: As in any strenuous activity, what you wear and the equipment you use are important parts of staying safe and healthy during a move. Make sure that you are wearing good footwear that will not slip, clothes that will not get caught while carrying heavy objects, and gloves if needed to ensure you don’t lose your grip. If necessary, don’t be afraid to use a lifting belt to help support your lower back.
3. Listen to your body: We have all been there: it is the end of the day and there is just one last large box to lift and so we try to muscle it up and be done with it. This is how an injury happens. If you are tired, take a rest or get some help. If a box seems too heavy, it is too heavy! If you feel a twinge when you lift something, take a break. We often do not feel the full effects of an injury right away.
4. Stay hydrated: Proper hydration ensures that your muscles, tendons, and ligaments, as well as the discs in your back, are in an optimal condition to lift heavy objects and perform their job. It has been shown that a person is much more likely to sustain a musculoskeletal injury when they are dehydrated.
5. Stretch: Moving should be treated like any other intense activity or exercise. It is important to warm up and stretch before getting started, and a stretch at the end of the move will help relieve and reduce sore muscles and get you back to functioning at an optimal level.
Want to learn more about how to properly lift, how to warm up or how to get healthier and stronger in general? Come visit or contact us at C.O.R.E. Physical Therapy!