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Lift Light, Shovel Right
From the Ontario Chiropractic Association

Stay Safe this Season
When you consider that a shovelful of snow weighs 5 to 7 pounds,
you realize how much weight you have to lift to clear your sidewalk or driveway
–on average,several hundred pounds!

These tips will help keep your back in top shape:

1. Don’t let the snow pile up. Frequent shoveling will allow you to move smaller amounts of snow at once.

2. Pick the right shovel. Use a lightweight pusher-type shovel... if you are using a metal shovel, spray it with Teflon first so snow won’t stick to it.

3. Push, don’t throw. Always push the snow to the side rather than throwing it. That way you avoid lifting heavy shovelfuls of snow and sudden twisting or turning movements.

4. Bend your knees. Use your knees and leg muscles to do the pushing and lifting while keeping your back straight.

5. Warm up. Before tackling any strenuous activity, warm up with some overall conditioning. (a 10–15 minute walk should do it, followed by simple stretching)

6. Take a break. If you feel tired or short of breath, stop and take a break and rest. Stop shoveling immediately if you feel chest pain or back pain. If you have back pain that persists for more than a day after shoveling, see your chiropractor.