The Seasons are Changing
Falling temperatures bring falling leaves which can mean a lot of work whipping our yard into shape before the winter comes. A few simple steps can mean the difference between enjoying the beautiful colours on a cool, brisk day and winding up immobile on the couch with an ice pack.
Warm Up Your Muscles
Take a quick walk around the yard (or the neighbourhood) for 5-10 minutes to assess what work needs to be done. Swing your arms in wide gentle arcs while you’re at it. Slowly and gently turn your neck to look side to side. A little jog on the spot or a few jumping jacks shows you’re ready for business.
Layers are best so that items can be removed as you start to become warm. Make sure you can move freely so that you don’t do anything awkward in the heat of the moment. Shoes should be supportive and protective.
Light work. Heavy work. Repeat. Give yourself a chance to rest and check in with yourself after 30-45 minutes. Heavy loads should be shared.
Have water with you and drink a little with each rest break.
We tend to do everything with one dominant hand and one dominant foot. Change hands after a while and let the other foot take a turn with the shovel, etc.
Is your back straight? Are your feet shoulder width apart? Do you bend with your knees and lift with your legs correctly or are you letting your low back do all the heavy work?
Watch Your Feet
Is your dominant leg always out front and your dominant hand leading with the rake? Switch it up at regular intervals.
Don’t Be A Hero
Never force into one day that which can be completed tomorrow. It’s better to have a little left over for the next day and be comfortable than to do too much, too quickly and spend the next few weeks nursing a sore back unable to enjoy the fruits of your labour.
Visit your chiropractor to have your spinal mobility assessed. It is easy to overload joints which can lead to inflammation, decreased range of motion and pain.