One of the most known causes of back pain is improper lifting. Back pain is a common complaint among patients who seek help from their chiropractors. Instances like moving the couch down the stairs then something popped, or bending down to pick up your child and your back suddenly hurts are just some of the scenarios that can trigger an aching back, and worse, may prevent you from doing normal activities for a long time.
These injuries can be avoided if people recognise and apply the basic principles of lifting such as planning ahead before you lift, picking up the load close to your body, bending your knees and keeping your back straight and lifting the load with your legs. If you feel you are straining, get help immediately. Before discussing the five useful lifting tips, let’s first list the common mistakes of lifting most people make.
Five Most Common Lifting Mistakes
- Bending the back – slouching and improper bending makes you more susceptible to injury. Your spine can be bent beyond the capacity of your ligaments and muscles to stretch, which causes damage that can trigger tissue damage as well as the result of muscle spasms.
- Not using legs – your legs should handle the hard work of lifting. Legs are best equipped to handle the heavy load as they have the largest muscles. When using your legs to do the heavy lifting, keep your backbone straight and then lower your body by squatting down.
- Not getting close – holding and lifting the load farther away from your centre of gravity only increases the strain to be placed on your skeletal system in order to support the load. An additional strain on your skeletal system results in a greater possibility of over stretching muscles and ligaments.
- Twisting – whenever you lift with your spine in a twisted position, you’re putting your muscles and ligaments up to extreme pressures that they can’t withstand in many cases. This movement often leads to tissue and disc injury.
- Carelessness – You need to be naturally aware of your posture all the time, especially when you are lifting, to help you avoid unexpected injuries. Being unmindful about bending your back out of its natural position, not using the strength of your legs, not keeping the load as close to your body as possible and twisting your back can be the source of back pain and back injury.
Simple and Easy Lifting Tips
Here are easy-to-follow and effective lifting tips you should try to avoid injury while at home or at work:
- Keep the chest forward by bending at the hips and not the low back. You need to bend your hips and push your chest out to point forward. Avoid twisting. It’s not enough to bend your knees alone, as it will still allow you to curve back and cause injury. However, keeping the chest pointing forward will assure a straight back.
- Lead with your hips and not your shoulders. Twisting can cause back injury. Keep your shoulders in line with your hips to avoid this movement. If you change directions, be sure to move your hips first so that your shoulders will move in harmony.
- Keep the weight close to your body. The farther the load is held from your centre of gravity, the more is needed to hold that load up. The extra force used in holding the object will run through your lower back. Thus, if you lift the object close to your body, you’re less likely to get back injury.
Treat Back Pain with Excellent Chiropractic Care on the Gold Coast
Are you living with chronic pain from a back injury? Do you have injuries that happened in the past and want to determine if they could still be trouble for you? Do you want to make sure that you are practising safe lifting techniques and proper posture? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then come and see us here at Hinterland Chiropractic.
Your Gold Coast chiropractor at Hinterland Chiropractic can provide you with a safe and natural way to effectively eliminate back pain and injuries using a holistic approach. Call us today at (07) 5527 3133 or simply book an appointment online to experience the science that is grounded on self-healing.