How to Avoid Gardening Injuries
by AZ Pain Doctors, on Nov 22, 2019 3:19:05 PM
For anyone who lives somewhere up North, it may seem odd to think about gardening in the middle of winter. However, for anyone who lives somewhere like Phoenix, winter gardening is a very common thing.
Unfortunately, this means that the risk of developing chronic pain in Phoenix as a result of gardening is much higher because this activity continues year-round. That is why it is important for someone who gardens to take the proper precautions in order to help avoid developing any issues that cause them to have to go through pain management treatments in Phoenix. Here are the best ways for someone to avoid gardening issues and keep themselves out of the pain clinic in Phoenix.
Stretch Before, During, and After
As with any sort of physical activity, stretching is a very important part of preventing injuries. If someone spends several hours continually bent over and looking down as they garden, then they are much more likely to develop neck pain issues in Phoenix. However, by taking the time to properly stretch out their body, they make themselves much less likely to suffer any issues.
The mistake that many gardeners make is that they only stretch once during the entire time that they are gardening. While stretching at all is certainly beneficial, it is not enough when someone spends more than 15 or 20 minutes gardening.
They should be starting their stretching before they even begin gardening. By doing some light stretching beforehand, it allows their body to properly warm up. Even just walking around continually for a few minutes can go a long way in warming the body up for all the bending and lifting involved in gardening. After that has been done, they will be properly prepared for any gardening that they have to do.
However, this is not where the stretching should end. They should also make sure to take a few seconds every 10 or 15 minutes to do some more stretching. This will give their body a break for a bit and will allow their muscles that are not being used to stretch out and avoid become sore later on.
Lastly, they should be making sure to take some time to stretch once again after they have finished all of their gardening work. At this point, it should be some very light stretching that acts as a cool down from the physical work that they did while gardening. It is important that they are taking slow and deep breaths as well, which will further allow their body to loosen up and help them to avoid developing any back pain issues in Phoenix.
Use Taller Equipment
When people think of gardening, they often picture someone on their hands and knees using a garden trowel. However, gardening does not have to involve this much bending all the time. The majority of gardening tasks can actually be done from a standing position, which is much better for a person’s body. But in order to be able to do this, a person needs to be using the right kind of equipment.
A lot of gardening tools come with a long handle option that allows someone to not have to bend over nearly as much in order to do so. The less amount of time that someone has to spend bent over, the less likely they are to develop any sort of pain issue.
Expand the Garden In Small Amounts
One of the worst things that someone can do to themselves when it comes to gardening is taking on more than they can handle. When someone has never gardened before or has not gardened in a long time, it can be tempting for them to want to jump back into it be getting several different types of food and plants to look after.
However, gardening is something that requires a lot of frequent work, which is why it can quickly become overwhelming for a lot of people. By having a lot of gardening to do, it causes people to often push themselves past their limits, which makes them much more likely to develop injuries.
The best thing to do is to start gardening with only a small gardening section to take care of. If someone finds that they can quite easily take care of the little garden that they have, then they can slowly expand it next season. This will help them to avoid taking on more work than their body can handle.
Do Slow and Smooth Movements
The key to avoiding getting any injuries is to try and always do smooth movements that do not exert your body too much. Since gardening is full of a lot of bending and lifting, this rule is extremely important when it comes to gardening.
Something that happens a lot in gardening is twisting to try and reach various tools or plants beside the person. What people need to avoid doing is any sort of sudden twisting of their upper body while their lower body stays still. This puts an extraordinary amount of strain on their back, which makes them much more susceptible to developing strained muscles.
The best way to avoid this happening is for the person to make sure that they always keep their back aligned with their lower body. If they need to make any sort of turning motion, then they should do it while turning their lower half as well. This will help to prevent their back from twisting and causing any sort of muscle injury.
Work In Pairs
Something that is always a good idea is getting someone to help with the gardening. There can often be certain activities required in gardening that pushes an individual to their physical limits, such as lifting a heavy bag of soil. However, when they have someone there to help them, they will be much better equipped to complete the work. It is also an extra pair of eyes to keep an eye on them and help them if they ever do injure themselves.