Keep Your "Nose Over Toes" and Lift Safely this Holiday Season
Hanging lights, lifting boxes of decorations, hulling a tree into the house…the holidays feature a lot of heavy lifting. But without proper form, that heavy lifting may turn your holiday cheer into drear if you end up with an injury! Our ATI Worksite Solutions team helps you avoid injuries with these safe lifting tips.
First, always practice proper form when lifting to help protect your body from injury.
“When you’re lifting, it’s important to remember ‘nose over toes,’” says Cindy Strouse, ATI Ergonomics Consultant. “If you’re lifting and twisting your body, your nose is no longer over your toes. This leads to improper posture and puts you at risk for injury.”
As you get all those boxes out of the attic or carry all of your shopping bags in from the car, Strouse notes that you shouldn’t try to take on too much at once.
“One of the most common mistakes people make is carrying too much at one time,” Strouse says. “Make several trips and keep your path clear of other boxes or bags.”
From stretching to shoes, here are seven other tips to remember:
- Stretch before handling any heavy load to warm up your muscles for the work ahead.
- Squat with your back straight and your stomach muscles tight when you’re lifting or lowering a load.
- Keep your arms close to your body. Rather than overreach or overextend to get something, take a few steps closer to put less pressure on your upper body.
- Position your feet shoulder width apart, staggered, and facing the load.
- Make your movements controlled and smooth where possible and try to avoid sudden movements.
- Align your shoulders, nose, and toes with the load to keep yourself centered.
- Wear proper footwear. Always wear comfortable and properly fitting shoes, and be sure they are slip-resistant if possible.