Firstly, face the direction in which you want to carry the weight. Always lift using a relaxed, straight back and make sure your legs are at least your hips’ width apart with the knees bent. Keep your head and shoulders directly above your waist and keep the weight you are carrying as close to you as possible – avoid twisting. Avoid bending from the waist, which increases the stress on your lower back. Never keep the knees straight, as this will lead to over-stretching and damage to your back and never lift while twisting from the waist. Try and lift with a ‘broad base’ i.e. your feet about shoulder width apart or more, this will make you more stable.
Don’t lift with your arms straight out, keep the elbows bent and to your side to minimise the stress on your back. Make sure you balance or secure the weight before you start moving. Putting the weight down can often cause just as many injuries as lifting it up. If possible, put the weight on something waist height rather than the floor. If you do have to put it on the floor, try and keep you shoulders hips and knees pointing in the same direction, have a ‘wide base’ and bend your knees rather than your back.
If you need any help or advice then please call Linda and the team at Bearsden Osteopaths on 0141 942 0629. You can also book an appoinment online at www.bearsdenosteopaths.co.uk/contact-us