I’m sure you’ve heard it before: “Don’t lift things that are too heavy for you.” Perhaps you think you are immune to this advice. Or maybe, just maybe, you took heed to this advice and
learned how to lift.
Medically, when you lift something that is too heavy for you, you back muscles are strained, which can lead to sprains and tears of the muscles themselves. Even worse, you are running the risk of acquiring a herniated disc or pinched nerve. Ouch!
There are prescribed practices that have been found to help you in lifting an item that is too heavy for you. But first, let’s take a look at how to lift an item that is within the range of your capability. Even if you are within the range of say 50 pounds and your body strength allows you to do this, if you lift such an item improperly, you also run the same risk of lifting something that is too heavy. Thus, learning how to lift is something everyone should master.
HOW TO LIFT PROPERLY WITH A HEALTHY BODY
Experts suggest that if you plan your lift you are on the right track. This would mean to remove all obstructions from your path and assess the distance you will be carrying such a load. Next, keep the load as close to your waist for as long as possible while keeping your arms and elbows close to your body. This will put less strain on your back.
A proper positioning of your legs is important when you do this. Keep one leg slightly forward to maintain balance. To this I would add, wear smart shoes if you are moving heavy items. It will not work well for you try to lift while wearing flip-flops, or god forbid, heels.
Slightly bending your back, hips and knees as you begin to lift your item is okay and is preferrable to squatting as you lift. CAUTION: do not bend your back while lifting. This can be avoided by not straightening your legs as you rise with the load. Likewise, do not twist your back or lean sideways as you rise. Rather, turn by moving your feet.
RESOURCES THAT WILL HELP YOU TO LIFT
The Mayo Clinic has a great visual called “Proper Lifting Techniques” if you follow this link [https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/multimedia/back-pain/sls-20076866}
When it comes to lifting things, one of the most practical things to do is put items in a cart on wheels instead of a box which can be cumbersome for many people. There are many places that sell shopping carts, with many types of designs. This is a popular item with many seniors and can be researched by going on Amazon.
Most can carry a weight of up to 60+ pounds. The cart itself is approximately 12 to 13 pounds and can fold up to fit in the trunk of a car or else to be out of the way until needed. These are great for carrying groceries from the car, laundry to the laundromat or even books when visiting the library. Most have wheels that will allow you to easily pull up a stoop and over a threshold.
Call Missy Donaghy with Interiors for Seniors for a FREE consultation 321-279-3301.
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