Bending awkwardly to lift everyday items seems to be a big cause of back pain, amongst my clients at least.
Everyone knows to ‘bend your knees’ but it’s quite tricky to put that in to practice.
Let’s have a closer look at what you should do.
First of all, have a good look at the item you’re going to lift.
Is it awkwardly shaped and difficult to handle?
Is it easy to reach or is it far away and surrounded by clutter? – Shift the clutter and slide the item closer to you.
Is it a weight you can manage on your own? – If it is likely to be too heavy, get someone to help you. It may seem like a chore but it’s better than getting back pain!
You really need the item as close to you as possible, directly in front of you and easy to grasp.
Over reaching or twisting to reach something (usually in the back of a cupboard or car boot) is a recipe for back pain.
Secondly, place one foot a little in front of the other. Then bend your knees and squat down.
Hold the item you want to lift. Engage your core muscles (gently hold in your stomach muscles).
Keep your back straight & upright and push up with your legs until you are standing, holding the item against your stomach.
DO NOT use your back as a crane to lift things.
For heavy objects you can lift in stages – so lift it on top a table or other stable surface, then pick it up again to
Lastly, never try to lift a heavy object above shoulder level…it’s not worth the risk.
For more information have a look on the DSE website.