If you work in an environment where you need to lift heavy objects, or if you participate in any sports or activities that require heavy lifting, knowledge about safe lifting techniques can save you from preventable injuries!
Lifting heavy objects, whether just once or repeatedly over time, creates stress on our backs and other joints of the body. This stress can accumulate over time and lead to a number of avoidable injuries. Applying an ergonomically sound technique to your lifting is the best way to eliminate any unnecessary stress on your body and prevent lifting-related injuries.
Follow these quick tips to make your lifting as safe as possible!
- Warm up before you lift.
- Before lifting something, quickly warm up your back, shoulders, and arms. You can do this by gently rotating your back, rolling your shoulder, and gently making small circles with your arms.
- Plan your course.
- Make sure you know the weight of what you’re lifting and are certain it’s safe for you to do so. Plan your route and make sure it’s safe and free of any obstructions. If needed, get help to lift heavy or awkward objects.
- If you’ve got equipment, use it!
- If you have access to lifting equipment such as dollies, carts, lifts, or hoists, spare yourself the work and use them.
- Lift slowly and with your legs.
- When lifting, bend at your knees and slightly at the hip while keeping your back as straight as possible. Lift the object slowly and avoid quick or jerky lifts.
- Keep the object close to your body.
- Keeping the object as close to you as possible, as opposed to holding it further away from your body, reduces the amount of stress imposed on your body.
- Keep a wide stance and avoid twisting your back.
- Twisting and rotating our backs are the movements that are most likely to cause injury. Avoid these movements by pivoting on your feet or taking wide turns instead.
- Lastly, if you’re sliding an object, push it instead of pulling.
- Pushing an object rather than pulling it drastically reduces the amount of strain imposed on our body.
Follow these tips to make your lifting as safe and ergonomic as possible. If ever you’re hurt or are experiencing pain or discomfort from lifting, Bellefleur Physiotherapy is here to help get you back on track. Call us at 613-424-7852 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to book an assessment with one of our physiotherapists.