By Jeff Sheppard 18 Dec 2022 no comment 417 Views

Are you hoping to get a snow shovel for Christmas?  Probably not!

Did you know that the average shovelful of snow weighs 5 to 7 pounds?  Multiply that by however many shovelfuls you need to clear your walk and driveway.  You might be looking at an intense physical workout!

Keep yourself safe with these critical tips to shovel snow with care.

Warm up before starting.  Shoveling snow may be a chore but it is also exercise.  Take the time to stretch to minimize your risk of injury.

Push, don’t throw.  Push the snow to the side whenever you can.  Throwing requires you to lift heavy shovels and increases the risk of twisting movements that can cause injury.  It’s better to shove the snow out of the way.

Pick the right shovel.  Choose a lightweight pusher-type shovel.  If you’re using a metal shovel, be sure it’s treated so snow doesn’t stick to it.  Shovels designed for digging aren’t good for snow removal because they aren’t designed to help you push the snow.

Bend your knees.  If you must lift the snow (for example, if the banks are too high for you to push), use your knees, keep your back straight and let your leg and arm muscles do the lifting.

Don’t let the snow pile up.  It’s less strenuous to move little bits of snow several times than to try to dig out everything at once.  If the weather report calls for several days of snow, shovel frequently.

Take a break.  Shoveling snow is not a race.  You don’t have to “beat” your neighbours.  Stop and take a rest when you feel tired or out of breath.  Stay hydrated.  Stop shoveling immediately if you feel chest or back pain.

If you’ve been shovelling snow, make an appointment with your chiropractor.

If you’ve been getting regular maintenance care, your body will be performing at its best.  It can increase your flexibility and decrease your risk of injury.

Or, if you do suffer an injury while doing snow removal, chiropractic care can help you heal.

If you have severe chest pain, call 911 immediately.  If you have severe back pain, or back pain that persists for more than a day after shovelling, make an appointment with Sheppard Chiropractic Centre at (506) 635-8182 or (506) 847-7172.

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