Feb 10, 2015

Wintertime can be stressful enough; don’t add the strain of back pain. Follow these simple tips to avoid back injuries and keep the cold months pain free and healthy.

Post-holiday strain: Stringing lights on the front of your house may have seemed like a great idea, but be sure to not over-do it when taking them down. Use step-ladders when hanging or taking down decorations in a high place and don’t ever try to stretch and reach beyond a comfortable limit. You don’t want to be paying for it all year.

Over-eating: Obesity is one of the largest causes of back pain. Winter is a common time to forget about your diet and eat everything in sight. Don’t do it. Stick to your health plan and don’t over-eat just because it’s gloomy outside. Make a New Year’s resolution and stay strong. Maintaining a healthy diet will give you stronger bones and less weight on your back.

Shoveling snow: Lifting a shovelful of snow should be done with your knees, not your back. Keep your back straight, bend your knees, and lift the snow by straightening your knees. In addition, shoveling huge amounts of snow at a time will cause wear and tear on your lower back. Instead, shovel smaller amounts with more tosses. Also, be sure to lessen lower back pain by alternating sides- toss to your left then right.

Winter sports: As with all sports, don’t forget to stretch before skiing, snowboarding or snowshoeing. Be sure to stretch both before and after a workout to minimize any damage to muscles.