Lifting and carrying without hurting your back

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Although the human body has evolved to enable us to complete a variety of tasks, we still need to take care we don’t push it to breaking point.

Here are a few top tips from Shrewsbury Chiropractic Clinic on how to prevent a bad back.


·         Face the direction in which you want to carry the weight.

·         Lift using a relaxed, straight back. Your legs need to be at least your hips’ width apart and ensure you bend your knees.

·         Keep your head and shoulders directly above your waist and ensure the object you are carrying is as close to you as possible – no twisting. 

·         Avoid bending from the waist, as this increases the stress on your lower back.

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·         Never keep the knees straight, as this will lead to over-stretching and damage to your back and never lift while twisting from the waist. 


·         Try and lift with a ‘broad base’, so your feet are about shoulder width apart or more. This will make you more stable. 


·         Don’t lift with your arms straight out, keep the elbows bent and to your side to minimise the stress on your back. 

·         Make sure you balance or secure the weight before you start moving. (It is easier to carry a bowling ball in a bowling ball bag than in large cardboard box where it can roll around.) 

·         You also need to be careful when you are putting the object down, as this is just as likely to cause a back injury. Try to put the weight on something at waist height rather than on the floor. If you do have to put it on the floor, try and keep your shoulders, hips and knees pointing in the same direction, have a ‘wide base’ and bend your knees rather than your back.


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