The winter holds many opportunities for personal injury. People from across the country may engage in activities that they’re not used to pursuing year round, and down that road lies trouble. Some of these injuries might seem obvious, whereas others you may not have even thought of. To ensure that citizens confronted by winter weather remain safe, the Minnesota Chiropractic Association has provided tips for all types of situations.
For those Californians who live in areas where snow and ice are likely to fall, you have to know how to shovel snow. Doing so properly can minimize the potential for injury. The act of shoveling can place strain on muscles that might be ignored during other parts of the year. You should give yourself ample time to stretch and put on plenty of layers so that your muscles can remain warmed up throughout the activity.
To further prevent injury, make sure to push the shovel toward as opposed to repeatedly lifting and twisting. Doing the latter puts you at greater risk for an injury. If you do have to lift for whatever reason, make sure to bend your knees instead of putting all the pressure on your back. And if there’s ever a time where you’re feeling overly fatigued or the strain is beginning to turn painful, make sure to take a breather and come back to finish the job a little later.
You also have to make sure that you’re limiting your exposure to injury while taking to a sled, whether you plan to remain at home for the holidays or you plan to travel to an area where the snow falls in greater amounts. Similar to when you were shoveling, you should make sure to engage in stretching exercises before you begin. And don’t be a daredevil out there. Before you begin your downward trek, kneel on the sled as opposed to lying down or putting yourself in some other contorted position. Stick to the ground by avoiding patches of land that might send you into the air and put you in further danger.
Some of these same tips would also apply to skiing. Warm up, don’t take unnecessary risks, etc. The most important takeaway is to take care during any outdoor activity and to minimize your risks by not straining your body past its limits.
If soreness sets in following any activity, then make sure to take it easy. And even though you just came in from the cold, the best thing for you might be an ice pack that can ease the pain. Should pain continue, then make sure to get in touch with a doctor.