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Sunday, February 8, 2009

Tips for Snow Shoveling

The winter weather has been so topsy turvey this year it’s difficult to know whether to keep a snowshovel or an umbrella handy. Assuming we’ll have a few more nowstorms, we wanted to provide you with a few tips to make snow removal safer and easier:

• To start, shoveling small amounts of snow can be a good warm-up for the body.
• Shovel size is very important. A shovel that is too big for you may mean you have
to push and lift 20 lbs. of snow; one too small will make too many paths and take
you much longer.
• When holding the shovel, keep your hands far apart for good leverage.
• For hard-packed snow, consider adding salt or sand to speed up melting and to
provide some traction.
• Always lift with the larger muscles of your legs and bend at your knees. Avoid
bending and lifting solely with your back.
• Don’t forget to “breathe” when lifting
• When tossing the snow, avoid twisting the back – toss the snow directly in front
of you.
• Shovel several smaller loads rather than one large load.
• Shoveling snow is like any strenuous activity. Plan rest breaks throughout.
• If you are at risk of heart disease, have a history of heart trouble, high blood
pressure or back and joint pain, consult a health care professional before attempting
any strenuous activity including snow shoveling.

Finally, if you can afford it, consider a snow blower or hiring someone else to do
the job!

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