Goodbye snow, hello shoveling; safety for your health

Safe snow shovel practices

Posted: Jan. 16, 2018 7:49 AM

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - With the bitter cold temperatures and wind chills Storm Team 10 has been tracking, you may be putting off shoveling away our latest rounds of snow and ice.

But unless you can wait until temperatures do the job for you later this week, you'll have to get the job done yourself. That’s shoveling the mounds of snow from your driveway and sidewalks.

Local doctors say the technique is vital. They recommend lifting with your legs and not your back. This is to avoid getting hurt.

Doctors say each time you shovel, it's likely between 20 and 25 pounds per scoop.

Experts also say this chore is similar to a complete workout. They say you should warm up before picking up the shovel, just like you would before exercising.

They say you should jog at least a few minutes to get your muscles warmed up. Doctors also recommend stretching your entire body, with a focus on your back, before shoveling.

But doctors say moving hundreds of pounds of snow can have lasting impacts on your health.

Here’s a list of more precautions by the National Safety Council:
• Do not shovel after eating or while smoking
• Take it slow and stretch out before you begin
• Shovel only fresh, powdery snow; it's lighter
• Push the snow rather than lifting it
• If you do lift it, use a small shovel or only partially fill the shovel
• Lift with your legs, not your back
• Do not work to the point of exhaustion

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