Back pain is one of the most common physical problems amongst adults. With over 80% of adults experiencing serious back pain at some point in their life, chances are that you will also suffer from back pain sooner or later. One of the most common causes of back pain is the use of improper lifting techniques. To avoid serious back pain, people should try to follow a few of these simple steps for safe lifting of heavy objects.
1. Stop and think before you lift
Taking a moment to think about and plan the lift can help you to avoid back injury. Try to size-up the object to determine the best way to handle it, determine whether you will need assistance and make sure that there are no obstructions between you and the place that the object is being moved to.
2. Be aware of stability and balance
Maintaining balance and stability during the lift are important steps. Keep your feet about shoulder-width apart and try to hold the item close to your body and near to your waist. Going off balance or having the weight distributed to far from your body can result in an injury.
3. Get a good hold on the object
Having a good hold on the object will help to reduce the chance of the object slipping when you are lifting or carrying. For most people when an object slips from their grip, their natural reaction is to try to quickly regain their hold. This can often result in a situation where the burden is placed on your back and it can result in an injury.
4. Bend at the knees
Bending at the knees to lift a heavy object puts most of the load on the stronger leg muscles instead of the weaker back muscles. Bending at the waist can easily lead to back pain.
5. Pay attention
Take your time and watch where you are going and try to occasionally look at where you step. Bumping into a piece of furniture or stepping on something that may have been left on the ground could throw you off balance and lead to injury. Even if you have planned your path and moved obstacles, it is still important to be aware.
6. Don’t overload yourself
When it comes to lifting heavy objects, one of the best ways to avoid injury is to know your own limits. Just because you can lift an object, that doesn’t mean that you are lifting it safely. Asking for help can save you a lot of trouble and help you to avoid sustaining an injury.
Taking steps to avoid back injury when you are lifting and moving heavy objects is important for people of all ages and different levels of physical ability. It really only takes one wrong move before you end up in serious pain. This pain can limit your ability to work and your ability to enjoy life to the fullest. To keep yourself out of a situation where you are in serious pain and discomfort, take a few minutes to follow the rules for proper lifting.