It’s time to get all of those leaves out of the yard before they get buried under snow and end up being a mess in the spring. We’ve got seven tips to help you get your yard clear of leaves without straining your back.
7 Tips for Picking Up Leaves in Fall
Here are the best ways to protect your back when clearing your leaves this autumn:
- Hold yard tools close to your body – Whether you are using a lightweight rake or a heavy leaf blower, it is important to keep your yard tools close to your body to reduce strain on the spine.
- Don’t bend at the waist – In medical terms, we call this forward flexion. It goes against everything that we are taught about always bending at the knees, and it places all of the strain on your lower back.
- Maintain a neutral posture – The straighter you stand, the healthier it is for your spine. This allows the spine’s natural curvature to distribute the weight evenly.
- Take frequent breaks – Getting rid of all those leaves doesn’t have to be a race. If you treat it like one, you may end up spending all that time you saved (and more) having to rest your back from the pain. And if you do feel like you are racing against the clock with nature, then remember that slow and steady wins the race.
- Warm-up in advance – Just like you would stretch before a workout to avoid injury, you should be thinking the same way when it comes to yard work. Stretch to warm up beforehand and to relax the muscles afterward.
- Switch arms frequently when blowing leaves – When using a leaf blower, we have the tendency to hold it on the more comfortable side for hours at a time. If you switch sides regularly, you will avoid straining the back by making the same repetitive motion on just one side.
- Considering hiring help – It may not be cheap to have someone else rake for you, but think of how much time you will save not doing the work yourself and not being in bed with a stiff or sore back.
Help for a Stiff or Sore Back in Fairfax, VA
Ward Chiropractic & Rehabilitation is here help with acute or chronic forms of back pain. Whether it is related to repetitive motion, strain, or injury, we want to help you feel well as soon as possible. Call 703.672.1661 to schedule an appointment today!