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15 Safety Tips to Prevent a Back Injury During Your Fall Cleanup

Raking up a gigantic pile of leaves might seem like a simple task, however, if it’s done too abruptly with poor body mechanics, you can EASILY strain your precious back muscles. So before you pull out your rakes and leaf blowers, and potentially throw your back out, check out the following 15 Safety Tips:

1.  Warm up for at least 10 minutes before doing any heavy yard work. Try walking around the yard, doing some circular arm movements, bending forward and backward, and to each side.

2.  Use a rake that is comfortable for your height and strength.

3.  Wear gloves or use a rake with padded handles to prevent blisters.

4.  Wear shoes or boots with slip-resistant soles.

5.  Keep a roll of trash bags close by while cleaning the yard to easily place fallen leaves and other debris into the bags, so you will not trip over something that might be hidden by the leaves.

6.  When picking up leaves, bend at the knees – not the waist.  According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, if you’re going to lift something:

  • Position yourself as close to the object as possible so that you’re more stable.
  • Keep your feet shoulder-width apart to create a solid base of support.
  • Always bend at the knees, tighten your abdominals and lift with your legs.

7.  Avoid twisting your body while raking. Use your legs to shift your weight rather than twisting your back. Throwing leaves over the shoulder or to the side while raking involves twisting movements that can overly strain the muscles in the back.

8.  Don’t lift bags with your back. Bend your knees and lift with your leg muscles.

9. To avoid overuse injury, try switching sides every few minutes. Try raking 10 minutes left-handed and another 10 minutes right-handed.​

10.  Don’t overfill bags so they become too heavy to lift. Try dragging the bags or using a wheelbarrow if you have to move them long distances.

11.  If you’re using a tarp and dragging leaves to a curb, don’t overload it. And don’t twist your body when you’re pulling the tarp. If possible, have someone grab an opposite end to help you move the leaves.

12.  Don’t be a weekend athlete and try to bag all the leaves at once. Pace yourself and tackle leaves in several sections. Better yet, save the bagging for another day since you put your back at greater risk of injury by lifting right after raking.

13.  Be sure to have a family member hold the ladder in place when climbing a ladder and do not stand above the level indicated by the manufacturer.

14.  When you’re done, gentle muscle stretching can help relieve tension in the muscles. A hot bath can relax muscles.

15.  If your muscles are still achy after following tips #1-14, try scheduling a deep tissue massage.

SOURCE: http://morganmassage.com/2012/11/09/15-safety-tips-to-prevent-a-back-injury-during-your-fall-leaf-clean-up/


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Practice Policy Update Regarding COVID-19

Dear Patients:

Our patients, employees and family are our top priority at Long Island Spine Specialists, P.C.

We ask you to not visit any of our locations if you have symptoms such as fever, sneezing, coughing and possible shortness of breath.

Please cancel your appointment and re-schedule once you are feeling better and are no longer suffering with symptoms.

Only non-symptomatic patients will be seen. No exceptions.

Accompanying family members – including children – are asked to remain in the waiting area and will not be allowed to enter the exam rooms.

During this time of high concern regarding the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) we are taking extra precautions to maintain the highest possible standards of safety and cleanliness. Please be advised that we are carefully following recommendations from both the CDC and WHO and are here to help guide you through this time if needed.

Some steps we are taking to keeping safe:

  1. We know how important cleanliness is and always maintain the highest standards of cleanliness. To further offer you peace of mind, we have increased the frequency of the cleaning of our office.
  2. Rest assured that hand washing is strictly followed. Hand sanitizer is available to all staff and patients.
  3. Additionally, if you have recently traveled to a country with high rates of the coronavirus or have been on a cruise, please reschedule your visit for at least 14 days from your return date. We will gladly accommodate your needs to reschedule. At that time, a telehealth interface can be arranged if necessary.

Find up-to-date and accurate information on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website and feel free to reach out with questions.

- Your team at Long Island Spine Specialists, P.C.

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To learn more about Long Island Spine Specialists – and to discover how we can relieve your pain and help you find an improved quality of life – please contact our office today and schedule a consultation.

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