Snow Shoveling Stretches and Video’s

Today is January 21st 2012 AKA “the first real snow storm of the New England season”.  I wanted to post a quick few tips for you while you are out there shoveling or snow blowing your driveways, or perhaps even a random act of kindness’s driveway.  This is for those who plow as well, sometimes you do get out and shovel a few front door steps.  These snow shoveling preventative stretches and tips will aid in a healthy back this winter season.

Tip #1 ~ Heat

Have a heating  pack ready for the taking, either an electric one or one that can be brought with you in the plow truck.  (Put them in a small cooler and put in next to you in the passenger’s seat).  Don’t have a heating pad?  Grab a large bath towel, run it under warm water, ring it out and put it in the microwave for 5-6 minutes on high.  (Use common sense here, more or less time may be needed).  It will be hot when you take it out so best to use a dry towel or oven mitt.  fold the towel into a square shape and wrap it with a thin dry towel. VOILA, instant FREE heating pad.  Note that the smaller the towel the shorter length of time the heat will last.

Tip #2 ~ Stretch

BEFORE you venture out into the big bad world just give your legs and torso a few stretches (60-90 seconds).  You could even run in a place for 20-30 seconds.  You will be doing quite a bit of bending today and don’t want to send that beautiful back of yours into spasm.

Diagonal spinal twist

AFTER you have completed your shoveling job, stripped of all your cold wet clothes and hung them up for the next time you will venture out, lay on the floor and do this diagonal spinal twist stretch as seen in the picture to the right.  Bring your leg over to one side and stretch out your opposite arm  palm side up.  As I always say, time is more important than strength.  Don’t force the stretch, this may actually send you INTO a spasm, no no no!  Hold each stretch for at least 90 seconds if not 2 minutes, repeat on each side twice.

Tip#3~ Trigger point work

Using a tennis ball to get at all those sore areas in between your shoulder blades and low back region works great, a self care tool like the Theracane and Thumbby  are BETTER and more effective.  You can purchase those two tools in my office.  If you do not have either one of those very useful and amazing tools then stick to the tennis balls.  Check out the video below.

It’s a snowy Saturday out there folks, I’ll be snow blowing my L O N G driveway.  One key trick to a healthy back during snow shoveling season is to keep a hot pack ready and your local massage therapists phone number on speed dial!  Last year at this time quite a few calls came in.  I typically will open my office for emergency appointments before and after regular hours a few days after a storm.  Just another perk for all of our clientele.   Have fun out there!  Happy shoveling, sledding, snow blowing, snow angle-making and hot chocolate drinking!

Contact Relaxation Works today to book your appointment or purchase a self care tool.  Both are worth their weight in “wet snow” gold.


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