Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Pretty soon--falling leaves

I love trees, but they can't seem to keep it together. All the "stuff" falls off many species about this time of year--and guess who gets to rake up the results?

Raking leaves, says Kaixuan Liu, MD, founder and president of the Atlantic Spine Center, requires a lot of movements--twisting, bending, lifting, reaching.

Ouch!

Ways to avoid leaf-related injuries:

--Stretch before a raking session--back, leg, and shoulder muscles, neck. Hold each stretch 30 seconds.

--Avoid twisting. Don't just plant your feet and twist around to get to accumulations. Let your feet do some of it.

--Don't hunch over. Keep legs should-width apart, bend knees slightly. Make sure your rake is the right size to prevent leaning over.

--As you gather leaf piles, bend at the knees. Leaves don't look heavy, but they can be.

--Take a break every 15-30 mins.

--Stretch gently when you are done and headed for the couch.

If you still get aches and pains, esp 24-48 hours later, ice the area for 20 mins.

Another good method is to get your kid to do the raking.

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