Gardening is one of the most challenging activities for your spine. It is among the leading causes for lower back pain and even disc herniation! This activity requires you to work in a bent position, which negatively impacts your low back mechanics. It will leave you with that nasty lower back pain making you search desperately for a solution.
Repetitive raking, planting, and digging can also leave you with shoulder, knee and hip pain. This is usually related to prolonged bad posture, which is unfortunately required to garden properly. Our body is simply not designed for this. The worst part is that the pain rarely occurs while gardening, rather it shows up during the night, the following day, or later in the week.
Before you begin any extended periods of outdoor work, prepare with a five to ten minute warm up. A combination of slow, bigger body movements and stretching is a great start. Some simple yet very effective tools for you include body squats, hamstring stretches, shoulder exercises, and spine rotations.
The truth is that there are so many folks who come to the chiropractic office on Monday after a weekend of yard work and they are in a significant amount of pain. Can you relate?
Aside from not warming up, one of the next biggest mistakes is extended periods of time with no rest. It is easy to lose track of time when you are focused on finishing the yard. Unfortunately, this degrades the health of your spine and increases your pain levels.
Make sure that you are not continuing repetitive motions. Moving your body in different ways can help. This means if you are consistently raking and rotated to the left, stop to do a simple body squat, take a drink of water, and when you restart, rake rotated to the right.
Every hour make sure you take a ten minute break. Cap the number of hours you do total throughout the day based on your fitness and health levels.
Being able to perform these daily activities of living require that your spine is as healthy as possible. If you wish to not have significant repercussions after the fact, your spinal joints must move as fluidly through their full range of motion for optimal flexibility, mobility and nervous system communication. Chiropractic adjustments provide proper spinal joint motion that helps lead to increased flexibility, mobility, proper muscle activity and nervous system communication. The chiropractic adjustment is a weapon in your arsenal. Use it. Ideally, get your spine checked and adjusted prior to and after your long stints of yard work. Weekly adjustments help ensure that you are almost always in optimal condition.
The seasons are cyclical, as is the stress we put on our spine and body. Let me help you keep your spine safe and functioning optimally throughout the summer and beyond.
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