Protect yourself from backache, muscle strain and injury when gardening

Prevent injury when doing yardwork this summer
Updated: May. 23, 2023 at 3:00 PM EDT
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - Many people are out in their gardens and backyards - working hard to make them look their best. However, all that work could put a strain on your back and muscles.

Here @ Home sits down with Angie Reichardt, a physical therapist with SORVA (Spine and Orthopedic Rehab of VA), to learn ways to protect ourselves from backache, muscle strain, and injury during gardening and yardwork.

She explains the importance of postural alignment, and keeping that alignment as well as we can, even with changing positions.

She says be careful with lifting anything heavy - and make sure you’re lifting the correct way. Here are some other great tips:

Plant at waist height, if you can; raised garden beds are great for this, as they don’t have to be low/in the ground. Also, place these raised beds with herbs and things you use often close to the house.

Wear a gardening tool belt - not just for builders, you can carry all of your most useful tools to prevent repetitive bending and the time needed to look around for it.

Use a reel hose, to avoid pulling a heavy hose and/or dealing with bending to place it on/off the hook.

Better yet, place a soaker hose in your raised beds and around your growing plants, no need to pull a hose around.

Use a rolling stool to work from; you’ll be closer to your plants in the ground.

Wearing comfortable gardening shoes will help shock absorption - keens, mucks and oofos are recommended.