Protect Your Back While Shoveling Snow This Winter

back pain in ann arbor while shoveling

Whether we like it or not, winter in Michigan is here! With winter comes snow, and with snow comes the risk of hurting ourselves when we shovel.

Have you thrown out your back before? The pain can be intense, and even worse if you’re someone who suffers with chronic low back pain.

How can you prevent back pain and keep from throwing out your back?

Throwing out your back sounds sudden and violent, but it might not involve sharp pain or even a realization that you’ve done it until later. Symptoms of a thrown out back include:

  • Back stiffness that limits your range of motion
  • Intense low back pain
  • Muscle spasms
  • Problems standing up straight or maintaining good posture

Shoveling snow is one of the biggest reasons people in the Midwest throw out their back each year. According to Mass General Brigham, protect your back while shoveling by:

  • Warm up beforehand by moving your body, maybe practicing a few repetitions of shoveling movements.
  • Use proper equipment, ensuring that the shovel is not too long or too heavy. Space your hands out on the handle to increase your leverage.
  • Try to push the snow rather than lift it. When you do have to lift, only collect small amounts at a time. Then, walk the snow to where you want to put it. Don’t throw it to the side or over your shoulder, which can force you to twist and cause injury.
  • Bend and straighten your knees to lift the shovel, instead of bending at the waist. And keep your back straight. This squatting technique puts the work in your legs instead of your back and helps stop you from leaning forward.
  • Listen to your body. Pace yourself and take breaks, rather than power through until the job is done. If you’re expecting a lot of snow, start early and work in shorter shifts throughout the day. This way, you won’t have to lift very heavy loads of tightly packed snow.
  • Gently stretch your muscles during breaks and after you’re done.”

If you’re tired of treating the same symptoms, give something new a try. Sit down with a professional at Pivotal Chiropractic and tell them about your conditions. After an examination, you may learn that a real solution is not as far as you might think, and chiropractic care could be what you’ve been looking for.

Come to Pivotal Chiropractic for Back Pain Relief!

We understand that healthcare choices are critical decisions and that you have many different options to treat back pain in Ann Arbor and the surrounding communities. If you have back pain, neck pain, or tingling or numbness in your hands and feet, it’s time to see a chiropractor. To schedule a complimentary consultation, contact us at 734-221-0362.

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