Physiotherapy Clinic in Ville-Saint-Laurent

4 tips for avoiding injuries during your fall chores

With the falling leaves and Halloween on our doorstep, autumn is already in full effect. During this time of year, many of us are busy preparing our homes for winter. These outdoor activities can become very challenging if you work too quickly, or perform the wrong moves and do not take the time to warm up. Here are our tips for avoiding injuries during your fall chores.

To prevent injuries :

1. The golden rule

The golden rule to avoid hurting your spine is never to exceed the length of your arms in your movements. Indeed, if you go beyond this personal threshold, it is your spine that will suffer the repercussions. Whether you prune trees, rake leaves or clean the exterior of your home; always follow this rule. Do not forget to use a stepladder to be at the appropriate height.


2. Pick up the leaves without pain

Raking leaves on the ground can be a very effective activity to stay fit. On the other hand, it is important to use the right technique and the right tools. Opt for a rake with flexible blades with a fan-like shape. The task might take a little longer, but will be more enjoyable and less difficult for your arms. Decrease the tension on your back by placing one leg forward and the other behind. Alternate your legs and hands from time to time. In this way, you will always keep your center of gravity in the right place. Finally, avoid picking up leaves during rainy weather. Their weight increases considerably and exercise becomes much more difficult physically.

With its pickup bag, your lawn mower can also be a very effective method for picking up dead leaves. You only have to adjust the levers to the appropriate height for mowing. This way, you will pick up the leaves without mowing the grass. This method is much less demanding on your body, but just as effective.


3. Moving heavy objects without injury

Fall is also the time to put away your hoses, close the pool, store your BBQ and install your snow shelters. These activities may require you to lift and move heavier objects. It is important to follow the basic rules to lift these loads carefully.

First, approach the object and put your feet at the same width as your shoulders. Your feet and head should point to the object to be lifted. With your knees bent and your back straight, use the muscles of your legs and arms to lift the load while keeping it close to your body. To remove the load, bend your knees first, then maintain control while you unload.


4. Warm up and appropriate stretching

Remember to gradually warm up and stretch your muscles at regular intervals throughout your workday. A general warm-up of 5 minutes is also required to prepare the body by raising the temperature of the muscles, joints and tendons. If a warm-up is important at the beginning, it is also recommended to stretch at the end of the day. Do not hesitate to consult your health professional. They will be able to detect and help prevent many ailments.

Finally, to avoid hurting yourself, work progressively. Also take breaks as often as possible and don’t rush to finish the work before the first snowfall.


Fun tips

  • Use your fallen leaves to fill up garbage bags designed for Halloween decor. Why not? We can have fun while working!
  • Take a break in an orchard near you to handpick apples from Quebec. You are all aware of the proverb: an apple a day keeps the doctor away!

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