How to… Avoid Gardening Injuries

We Brits do love our gardens and we like them to look their best. But given the unpredictable British weather, when it is nice, there can be a tendency to rush to get all the jobs done in one go.

However, this unfortunately leads to a greater chance of injuring ourselves. And thus requiring a visit to someone like myself, your local chiropractor!

The most common problem I see as a result of gardening is lower back pain. This often comes on sometime after finishing for the day. But neck, shoulder and knee problems are also common. But why can gardening so often lead to these aches and pains? 

For many of us, the movements required when gardening are not what we usually do. Activities such as prolonged stooping and bending, overstretching to trim hedges, and holding one position for too long, such as when weeding and planting, can place stress on the ligaments and joints of the body, particularly the spine. This causes them to become inflamed and tender, which can build up over time until the pain becomes constant. Think of it as a sprained back – much like you can sprain your ankle – which is every chiropractor’s bread and butter!

So what can you do to avoid these injuries? Firstly, try to vary your activity by spending no more than 30 minutes on any one task. And remember to take regular breaks. Use a cushion or gardening stool to avoid repeatedly bending down from the hips. When kneeling, alternate between the left and right knee.

Resist the temptation to swing a hover mower from side to side. When using a step-ladder, move it regularly to keep up with where you are working, rather than leaning or overreaching. Using long-handled tools can reduce bending and pressure on the spine. If lifting anything heavy, keep the weight close to the body and bend the knees not the back.

Should this advice come too late and you are in need of some treatment, please remember to use the 20% discount off your first visit, as found in my advert below.

Dr Tracy Dixon DC CST – Talako 645 076

Talako Therapies