The winter can take a brutal toll on the body, especially when there is snow. Not only do I see an increase in injuries from slipping or falling, but I also see a lot of patients coming in with back pain due to shoveling. This past weekend we had 16 inches hit the Philadelphia area. And just yesterday, we got an additional 12-18 inches! We’re talking record breaking snow here.
Before you bundle up and head out to free your car or shovel your driveway and sidewalk, follow these simple steps and I guarantee you will prevent yourself a lot of hurt the following morning…
- Drink water and stay hydrated.
- Warm up. Especially if you are going out in the early morning. Do a couple jumping jacks or run in place. Get the blood flowing to your extremities.
- Shovel early and often. Don’t let it pile up.
- Use your legs, not your back. You may not look as good as your neighbor, but I promise you that will FEEL a lot better than he will the next morning. Feel free to give him my number!
- Stretch!!! Your body is not used to doing these types of motions so give it a well deserved cool down.
(Thanks for Dr. Lenny Roberts for the great article!)