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Shovel Snow Like A Pro

Shovel Snow Like A Pro: 3 Injury Prevention Techniques To Feel Your Best This Winter

by Kathleen Habschmidt PT, DPTLeave a Comment

Winter brings the joys of snow-covered landscapes and the excitement of winter activities. However, it also comes with the responsibility of shoveling snow, which can be physically demanding and potentially harmful if not done correctly. Below are three injury prevention techniques to help you stay safe and enjoy the winter wonderland.

1. Warm-Up Your Muscles

Just like any other physical activity, it’s important to warm up your muscles before shoveling snow. Cold muscles can be more susceptible to strains and injuries. Begin with some gentle stretches to loosen up your neck, shoulders, back, and legs.

2. Use The Right Shovel

Look for an ergonomically designed snow shovel with a curved handle that is the appropriate length to minimize bending and twisting when lifting heavy snow. A good shovel will help you maintain proper posture and mechanics throughout the task.

3. Practice Proper Shoveling Techniques

Correct technique is important when shoveling snow to prevent injuries. Here’s step-by-step techniques to practice.

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart for stability
  • Hold the shovel close to your body with one hand on the handle and the other on the shaft
  • Bend your knees and hinge at your hips while keeping your back straight
  • Lift with your legs, not your back, as you scoop up the snow
  • Pivot your entire body (don’t twist at the waist) to toss the snow to the side
  • Take small, manageable scoops of snow to avoid overloading the shovel

By following these injury prevention techniques, you can protect your body and enjoy a safe and healthy winter. Remember to take regular breaks, especially when dealing with heavy or wet snow. Listen to your body; if you feel fatigued or experience pain, stop and rest. Stay warm, stay safe, and shovel snow like a pro!

Dealing with aches and pains post-shoveling? We can help! Connect with our team for a free assessment in person or virtually through our telehealth platform.

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*Per federal guidelines, beneficiaries of plans such as Medicare, Medicaid, Tricare, VHA and other federally funded plans are not eligible for free assessments.

The Athletico blog is an educational resource written by Athletico employees. Athletico bloggers are licensed professionals who abide by the code of ethics outlined by their respective professional associations. The content published in blog posts represents the opinion of the individual author based on their expertise and experience. The content provided in this blog is for informational purposes only, does not constitute medical advice and should not be relied on for making personal health decisions.

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