10 Tips to Prevent Back Pain While Gardening in Fredericksburg

Jun 15, 2023

Gardening is a great way to get outside and enjoy nature while also getting some exercise. However, it can also be a source of back pain if proper precautions are not taken. Here are some tips from a chiropractor in Fredericksburg to help prevent back pain while gardening:

Warm up before you start. Just like with any physical activity, it’s important to warm up your muscles before you begin. Do some light stretches to get your muscles ready for the work ahead.

Use the right tools. Using tools that are the right size for you and that are in good condition can help reduce strain on your back. For example, a long-handled tool can help you reach without having to bend over.

Take breaks. Gardening can be hard work, and it’s important to give your body a rest. Take a break every 20-30 minutes to stretch and move around.

Use good posture. Try to keep your back straight and your shoulders back while you’re working. This will help reduce strain on your back.

Bend your knees. When you’re bending down to work, try to keep your back straight and bend at the knees instead of at the waist. This will help reduce strain on your back.

Use a kneeling pad or cushion. Kneeling on hard surfaces can put a lot of pressure on your knees. Investing in a kneeling pad or cushion can provide support and help prevent knee pain. Getting closer to what you are working on is necessary to save the back. Constantly bending at the waist to work on your project is not a normal position for the back. The back has a lot of elastic ligaments that support the spine and are overstretched when we aren’t using the muscle effectively like in gardening. Getting closer to your target allows your back to stay in neutral and spare the ligaments of the spine that can be overstretched and create tight sore muscles as a result. The injury you do to the ligaments can be long lasting if enough damage is done, so spare them.

Avoid twisting motions. Twisting motions can put a lot of strain on your back, so try to avoid them as much as possible. If you need to turn, do it with your feet instead of your torso. Discs are compromised when bending forward, this increases the pressure going through them and they have a jelly filling that can start to make its way out of the fibrous outer bands if we compress them too much. The compression coupled with rotation compromise the outer fibrous bands that contain the jelly filling, and this causes those bands to tear. If you tear enough of the bands severe low back pain begins with or without leg pain, this may be a protruding disc. Rotational motions also compromise the joints of the spine called facet joints, these joints do not like rotational forces. If back pain begins from these motions getting it looked at and properly diagnosed is something that needs to be done in order to keep the condition from getting any worse. We recommend you seeing a chiropractic orthopedist who specializes in these conditions and their diagnosis.

Lift properly. When lifting heavy objects, such as bags of soil or large plants, be sure to lift with your legs and not your back. Keep the object close to your body and avoid twisting as you lift.

Stay hydrated. Drinking plenty of water will help keep your muscles and joints lubricated and less likely to become sore.

Take care of your body. Remember to take care of your body, whether that means getting enough rest, eating well, or staying active. By taking care of yourself, you’ll be less likely to experience back pain.

By following these tips, you can help prevent back pain while gardening and enjoy the many benefits that this activity has to offer. Remember to listen to your body, and if you do experience pain, stop and rest. If the pain persists, it’s always best to consult with a specialist like a chiropractic orthopedist.

Are you wondering if you have more going on when you feel back pain while gardening? Our Fredericksburg team at Stine Chiropractic Clinic will answer your questions.

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