Improperly lifting heavy objects like boxes and furniture can result in back, leg and arm pain. More important, poor lifting technique can cause both acute and chronic effects. Learning the how to lift the right way can help you to avoid unnecessary injury. Here are five tips to proper lifting etiquette:
Before you lift any object, have a plan. Where is this object going? Can you lift the object on your own? Start by clearing a path to the object’s final destination. If you need help from another person, make sure he or she understands the plan too. Knowing what you’re doing and where you’re going will help reduce risk of injury.
Lift close to your body
You are stronger and more stable when you hold an object close to your body. And holding heavy objects at the end of your reach can place strain on your arms and back. Instead, try to keep your body balanced and have a firm grip on the object.
Feet shoulder width apart
A solid base is important when lifting heavy objects. If your feet are too close together they will hinder movement. Your feet are most stable when they are shoulder width apart. Also, if an object is too heavy or an awkward shape, get help. Do not try to lift it by yourself.
Bend at your knees
To reduce your chances of hurting your back, you should always lift with your legs. Practice good lifting posture by keeping your spine straight and lowering yourself to the ground by bending your knees. Tightening your abdominal muscles will also hold your back in good lifting position.
Wear a back belt
If you have a long day of lifting ahead of you, it might be a good idea to get a back belt. Wearing a back belt will support your spine and prevent a back injury. It will also help you to maintain a better lifting posture. You can get back belt at your local CVS or Walgreens.
Lifting heavy objects can be extremely dangerous for your body. Following these simple steps to proper lifting etiquette will ensure the safety of you and those around you. Good luck, and happy moving day!