Working in the yard is a popular outdoor exercise for many homeowners and a great way to get outside in the sun. According to Arborists Near Me, about 90% of all homeowners think that yard maintenance is essential, with two-thirds saying they would hire professional tree service to manage their care. But if you plan to do most of the yard work for your home, it is essential to follow these safety steps. Doing so can help you stay strong and minimize injury risks.
Keep Your Work Area Free of Clutter
When working in your yard, trip and fall injuries might be closer than you realize. Unfortunately, around 8 million people needed emergency medical care to manage fall injuries in 2019 alone. Avoiding this danger requires knowing your workspace and keeping it clean.
For instance, you can wear light and comfortable shoes that don’t wear your feet down as you work. You can also regularly clean your area, such as by picking up rakes, hoses, and other tools, to keep it free of danger. These steps can ensure that you don’t experience any long-term injury risks.
Warm Up Before Working Outside
People often don’t realize just how much working outside can put a strain on their bodies. That’s an issue because 80% of Americans enjoy gardening activities, both indoors and outdoors. Without proper preparation, these individuals could be overusing their bodies.
Avoid this issue by stretching and warming up a little before working, including a brisk walk or jogging in place for a few minutes. Switch your tasks every 30 minutes to avoid straining your body, such as changing from raking to watering. Take frequent breaks (five minutes every hour) to keep your body strong.
Know How to Lift
Working in the garden often includes heavy lifting, which can strain your body with time. For example, improper lifting posture can put a severe strain on your back and hips and even damage your knees. Proper lifting steps can minimize this risk and keep your body healthy and strong.
Always start by bending from the hips and knees and never lifting from your back. Doing so distributes your weight correctly and avoids repetitive strain injuries. You should also carry heavy objects, such as soil, trees, and mortar, in wheelbarrows to keep your back and knees protected.
Wear Protective Clothing
Working in your home garden should never be a dangerous prospect, but splinters, poisonous plants, and other debris can cause serious injury risks. Thankfully, you can avoid this by wearing gloves and other protective clothing. Long pants are essential when working outdoors.
Remember to wear a wide-brimmed hat, as well, to protect your eyes and face from the sun. Apply strong sunscreen to any exposed skin to keep yourself free from sunburns. Though it may be sweaty, wearing a comfortable long-sleeved shirt may also protect you from burns.
Drink Water Regularly
A lot of gardening is done outdoors in the summer when the weather is dry and hot. As a result, you need to keep water on hand at all times to avoid getting dehydrated. Don’t overdo it because a sudden drink of ice-cold water may trigger adverse reactions or even weigh you down.
Instead, take sips of water throughout the day when you feel thirsty. Always drink a good glass of water before doing yard work and take breaks when you need them. Find a nice shady place and relax to catch your breath. Gardening should be fun and relaxing and not exhausting or dangerous.
No matter what kind of garden or outdoor decorations you have at your home, these steps can help keep your body safe. If you’re still uncertain about these tips or need help executing them properly, reach out to a physical therapist or other professional to learn more. Doing so can help you manage the risk of improper lifting processes, ensure that your back stays strong, and provide the long-term medical support required to garden appropriately for years to come.