How to Stay Safe While Shoveling
I know, personally, I asked for winter weather for the holidays and of course, we received very little. I could’ve worn shorts on Christmas! It snowed on Halloween, but we couldn’t get a white Christmas? Come on, Mother Earth! All my wishes for winter weather have now been granted way too late, and we’ve been receiving snow and ice these last few weeks with more on its way.
After all the snow and ice, we have to worry about removing it from our driveways and sidewalks, but it’s very possible to injure yourself while shoveling snow, because it can be very heavy and it is a lot of work! I’ve compiled a few tips from multiple sources about how to stay safe while shoveling. First of all, the most common injury when it comes shoveling is injuring your back. The way a lot of people hurt their back is by lifting the snow while shoveling instead of just pushing the snow to the side. Once again, snow is heavy! You should also take breaks as needed. At the end of the day, there really is no rush. No need to hurt yourself because you’re rushing something with no finish line.
But you can also prepare yourself before you even get to the point of actually shoveling, consider salting before the snow arrives to lessen the load once it actually arrives. Also, if you know you’re going to be shoveling, prepare yourself by warming up your body, by doing jumping jacks or another exercise to get blood pumping.
While we’ve covered snow, you should also be careful with ice, especially black ice. Black ice is ice that takes on the color of the surface it is on, which makes it very hard to see. When thinking about how to be safe when it comes to ice, footwear is very important. I have many pairs of older shoes that I still love to wear, but there is little to no traction. I can’t count how many times I’ve almost fallen because my shoewear choice was poor. Wear shoes with traction that can have a little more grip on the surface you’re walking on. Also, take smaller steps with feet smaller apart to increase balance.
At the end of the day, the winter weather is coming whether we are ready or not, so why not be prepared and do everything possible to protect yourself?