Caring for your back is just as important as caring for your garden.
When the warmer weather hits, the plants in your garden can take off like they’ve got somewhere better to be. All that’s required is a little sun coupled with a touch of moisture, and your normally- organised garden bed can become a wild jungle only tameable with a steady weeding hand and a wheelbarrow.
When it comes time to get it under control and remove those pesky weeds, it might prove helpful to treat your body like it’s about to undertake an intense training session. Weeding might not seem like a laborious task, but some people may suffer from general muscle soreness and back pain as a result of continuous bending, lifting, weeding, and pruning. Even if you’re only in the garden for a few hours, it never hurts to put steps in place that might help to prevent those aches and pains.
Before you grab the garden spade, do a quick warm-up. Stretching your muscles before you tackle the garden can help warm and loosen them up for the task ahead. Once you’re ready to head outdoors, arm yourself with tools that might make gardening a little more comfortable. For example, a garden hose requires less strength and effort to use than a watering can, and a garden cart can remove the need to lift heavy bags of soil or compost by hand. Every little change in your gardening habits can make your time outside more enjoyable.
It’s easy to get caught up in what you’re doing and forget how long you’ve been pulling weeds, but it might also benefit your body to break up the task into 30-minute sessions. After 30 minutes, take a break, hydrate, and make sure you’re feeling comfortable enough to continue. Always remember to bend your knees when lifting, lift with your legs, keep your back straight and share heavy loads.
Gardening is a fun hobby to have, and forming good habits with proper technique can help to reduce the risk of back pain and/or injury. However, should you find yourself feeling worse for wear after a day of lifting and bending in the garden, your chiropractor is available for consultation.