National Gardening Exercise Day
Gardening is a physical activity involving lots of repetitive lifting, bending and twisting movements. The most common form of back pain is caused by the muscles that support the lower back going into spasm after doing something strenuous, such as digging. The problem is most of us are so busy enjoying getting on with our gardening that we don’t stop to think about the damage we could be doing until it hurts.
So what can we do to protect our backs?
Top tips – Looking after your back
- Warm up before you start work.
- Vary your tasks and change position every 10-20 minutes.
- Don’t overload your fork, spade or wheelbarrow.
- Lift property, bend your knees not your back and keep your feet wide apart.
- Choose tools carefully, going for long-handled, lightweight ones or those designed to reduce strain.
- Avoid over-stretching by moving closer to the job rather than having to lean too far.
- Oil and service mowers and tools regularly so that they work smoothly and easily.
- Use a kneeler to avoid bending or stooping.
- Make sure you relax afterwards – soothe aching muscles in a warm bath.
HAPPY GARDENING DAY