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Tips for Avoiding Yard Work Pain and Injury

Man doing yard work

Avoid Yard Work Pain and Injuries with These Tips

Do you dread the aches and pains you know you'll face after working in your yard during the weekend? Pulling weeds, pruning your rose bushes, or mowing your lawn may not seem like strenuous chores, but yard work activities are a common cause of stiffness and achy muscles and joints. Following a few of these tips will help you avoid injuries and pain the next time yard work is on your schedule.

Keep Moving

The longer you remain in one position, the more likely you are to experience stiff joints and tight, painful muscles. Change your position at least every 20 to 30 minutes. If you've been on your feet trimming overhead tree branches, switch to a seated activity for a half-hour before tackling the branches again.

Stretch It Out

Stretching is important whether you're going for a run, playing softball, or working in the garden. When you stretch before you tackle your latest yard work project, you'll:

  • Improve blood flow to your limbs
  • Keep your joints and muscles loose and flexible
  • Ease tight muscles

Failing to stretch could mean that your muscles will tighten while you work, limiting your range of motion. When muscles can't extend fully, you're more likely to experience muscle damage, strains, and painful joints.

Think Before You Move

Injuries are more likely to occur when you bend or twist. You can often avoid these injuries if you change the way you move. If you need to reach the flat of petunias behind your back, don't twist from the waist to reach the flowers. Instead, turn your entire body toward the petunias, pick them up, then move your body back to your original position.

Are you planning to spend the afternoon planting new shrubs or painting your fence? Don't forget to alternate hands occasionally. Using one hand for hours not only causes pain in your hand and fingers, but may also strain the muscles, joints, tendons, and ligaments on one side of your body.

Pay Attention to Your Posture

Poor posture stresses your joints, tightens your muscles, and increases your risk of sprains, strains, herniated discs, and other injuries. Unfortunately, it's not easy to maintain good posture when you're working in the yard. If you're planting seeds or flowers, try to bend from the waist instead of hunching your upper back and shoulders. When you operate your push mower, keep your spine and neck in a straight, neutral position.

Use the Appropriate Gardening Tools

The right tool makes any job easier. Stools, cushioned kneeling pads, rolling plant stands, elevated planting beds, and ergonomic gardening tools make yard work more comfortable and less likely to cause aches and pains.

Do you need to move a load of paving stones or bags of soil? Lifting heavy items can strain ligaments, tendons, and muscles, which can pull your spine out of alignment. Use a garden cart or wheelbarrow to move heavy items instead. Be sure to bend your knees and use your leg muscles, not your back muscles, when you move a heavy object into the cart or wheelbarrow. Don't hesitate to ask for help if the object is heavier than you expected.

Poor posture and unsafe lifting practices are common causes of back pain. In fact, 26% of people with back pain attributed their symptoms to physical work, according to a Statista survey.

See Your Chiropractor

Your chiropractor offers treatments that will ease your yard work aches and pains. Spinal manipulation, or adjustments, realign your spine, reduce tension on your muscles and tissues, and increase range of motion. Massage relaxes tight muscles, relieves spasms, and prompts your body to produce natural pain killers.

Want to avoid yard work pain in the future? Schedule regular visits with your chiropractor. When your spine is properly aligned, you'll be less likely to develop joint or muscle pain or experience strains or sprains. Best of all, chiropractic treatment is completely natural and doesn't cause any side effects.

Tired of dealing with pain after finishing yard work? We'll help you work out the kinks and soothe your aches. Contact us to schedule your visit.

Sources:

Harvard Health Publishing: The Importance of Stretching, 3/14/2022

SPINE-Health: Is Poor Posture Causing Your Back Pain?

American Chiropractic Association: Back Pain Facts and Statistics

Statista: Back Pain in the U.S. – Statistics & Facts, 8/25/2021

Palmer College of Chiropractic: April Showers Bring May Flowers…And Yard Work

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Thursday:

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Friday:

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  • "My son was referred for PT due to a sports injury. The Physician and Physical Therapist therapist did an amazing job and after 3 sessions he was completely back to normal with full range of motion and no pain. Thank you guys for doing a great job!"
    Mark Shim, 2022
  • "This is the one and only chiropractor I've ever been to. I've been here 2 times and Papa is amazing. He spotted exactly where my pain was fixed me right up. Great staff and awesome service!"
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    Richard Howard, 2022
  • "All of the staff is professional and friendly. Scott and the rest of the Physical therapists do a fabulous job. They are knowledgeable & optimistic on how they can help you. With their support I’m back to full range of motion which I didn’t think was possible. Great team to work with to get back to living!"
    V. Patterson, 2021
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    Jodie Alvarez, 2021
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    Maureen Simone, 2021
  • "Have been taking treatment from the facility in Jupiter since December 2019 after reinjuring a compromised knee. The staff are all very knowledgeable and proficient, and the people including fellow patients are sociable and friendly, adding extra value and fun to the experience. I have made outstanding progress in a speedy recovery, thanks to everyone helping me and personal attention from Dr. Papa and his associates, Dr. West and Physical Therapists Scott, Krystal, and Paige. Highly recommend this Practice. Wish that they were an option when I injured my knee in high school and later at basic boot camp decades ago. Looking forward to surfing, mountain climbing, skydiving, and bungee jumping again. (LoL!)"
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