How To Lift Heavy Objects Safely

Back pain can be very frustrating and debilitating, and impact many aspects of your life.  Using improper technique when lifting heavy objects can lead to back injuries that could easily be avoided.  However, most people do not learn about good lifting technique until they already have back pain.  Here are some simple steps you can take to lift heavy objects safely and avoid unnecessary injuries.

Evaluate The Situation

Before lifting the object, assess it’s weight and composition.  Push the object with your foot to see how easily it moves.  If it does not move at all, you may need assistance to move it.  Check the weight distribution within the object.  Is it liquid or solid? Is there a heavier end?  Clear the path ahead of you, and plan rest stops if needed.

Stand Close To The Object

The closer you stand to the object, the easier it will be to lift.  Stand with your feet shoulder width apart to ensure stability.  This will also ensure you have the full motion of your legs.

Bend Your Knees and Tighten Your Stomach Muscles

It is important to keep your back straight and bend with your knees.  You should avoid bending at your waist at all costs.  This puts unnecessary strain on your lower back and can cause injuries very easily.  Tighten your stomach muscles to help keep your spine straight and support the lower back as you grasp the load.

Engage Your Legs

When you have a good grip of the object, lift slowly using your legs.  Your leg muscles are much stronger than your back muscles.  Remember to keep your back straight, and aim to carry items at your waist height or lower.  Ensure the object does not obscure your vision as you may easily trip and fall on unseen obstacles.  Avoid jerky movements, and do not twist your body.

Setting The Object Down

Set the object down carefully, once again bending with your legs.  Keep the item close to your body and your spine straight, similar to the technique used when picking up the object.  Pivot your hips to face the drop-off point instead of twisting your upper body.  Once the object is set down, use your leg muscles to stand up again.

Chicago lawyers for spine injuries states that it is always easier to prevent an injury than to deal with it.  Be aware of how your body reacts under stress and listen to any aches and pains you may encounter.  Next time you are faced with lifting a heavy object follow these simple steps to help you lift safely and avoid injury.