So, here are my top five tips to effective and safe shoveling:
1.) Perform a Proper 5-Minute Warm-up Before Shoveling
Just as very few people properly warm-up before intense exercise, so do many people fail to get their bodies ready for the rigors of shoveling snow. Let’s face it, snow, especially when it’s wet, can be quite difficult to lift. And if your body is tight and cold then you will dramatically increase your chances of short or long-term injury.
2.) Take Breaks
Taking a break during a large winter storm can help overuse injuries. Even though shoveling can be classified as a functional movement, many people do not train their bodies for such movement. Giving yourself proper rest periods will allow those under used muscles to recover.
3.) Bend Your Knees
Bending your knees can take unwanted pressure off your low back. By lifting with your legs you will help engage more muscles and protect your low back from injury.
4.) Shovel EQUALLY to BOTH Sides
Another big mistake people make is that they always shovel to their strong sides causing further strength and flexibility imbalances that can put your body at greater risk for injury. Do 5 shovel tosses to your left with your left leg forward and then do 5 shovel tosses to your right with your right leg forward. Repeat until your driveway or sidewalk is crystal clear.
5.) Hire Professional Help
The great thing about snow storms is there are professionals who will remove the snow for you. They usually use equipment such as a snowblower or plow that makes the process faster, easier and safer.
These five tips will go a long way in keeping your body as safe as possible during this winter.
Tyler English is a National Academy of Sports Medicine Certified Personal Trainer and World Natural Bodybuilding Federation Professional Natural Bodybuilder. He is a local Simsbury fitness boot camp instructor and real world fat loss expert. To book him to speak at your local Farmington Valley company, club, or organization please contact him/her by email at farmingtonvalleybootcamp@
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