With lots of the country getting dumped on with snow, I thought it would be apropos to share a “how to” on Snow Shoveling. With a little forethought and a few easy tweaks, you can safely shovel snow and save your back too! Bonus: snow shoveling can be quite the workout offering cardio and strength training. Woohoo!
This may seem obvious but before heading out to shovel your driveway, consider your own health risks if any (i.e. back, knee or heart problems).
1. Warm it up– Treat snow shoveling as you would any other strenuous exercise and perform a short warm up and stretch before heading out.
2. Dress for the occasion– Wear appropriate shoes with traction, gloves and hat.
3. Plan it– Decide in advance where you will move the snow so that you only have to move it once.
4. Consider using an ergonomic shovel to put less strain on your back.
5. Choose wisely–Shovels with smaller blades obviously hold less snow thus requiring you to lift less weight. One shovel filled with snow can weigh 20 lbs.
6. Push it–If you can push the snow rather than lift it, it puts much less strain on your back.
7. Hands on–Place one hand closer to the handle and one hand closer to the blade for the most effective lifting position.
8. Drop it like a squat- Think about bending your knees, and hips while keeping your back straight similar to a squat. Lower and lift with your legs saving your back. Don’t twist your body to throw the snow rather step to the side.
9. Bottoms up– Keep hydrated and take rest breaks.
10. Stretch- Do a full body stretch afterwards as you would after any strenuous workout.