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Avoid the Pain of Shoveling


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Avoid strains and pains from snow shoveling in Southern Maryland

Snow certainly may be beautiful when it is delicately falling flake-by-flake to the ground. But when the snow slowly but surely starts to pile up, the beauty of a winter's landscape can turn into a formidable project.

A recent 17-year study published by the American Journal of Emergency Medicine says that snow shoveling sends on average more than 11,000 adults and children to the hospital every year. Snow shoveling can contribute to broken bones, head injuries, pulled backs, and even heart attacks. Overworking the muscles, falling, and being hit with the shovel were the most common reasons for getting hurt during a shoveling session.

Individuals who have existing heart problems may actually experience a heart attack if they overtax themselves while shoveling. Adults over the age of 55 are more than four times as likely than younger people to suffer heart-related side effects while shoveling snow.

Many people do not realize just how much of a workout snow shoveling can be. The physical demand of the activity can be on par with running on a treadmill, forcing the heart to work overtime. Compounded by cold temperatures, snow shoveling is nothing to take lightly. Heeding advice to be cautious can be the way to stave off injury or something more serious.

· Treat shoveling just like any other exercise and warm up first. Stretch your muscles, jog in place and get the heart pumping.

· Invest in an ergonomic shovel. These shovels are typically lighter than traditional steel shovels and have a handle and design that reduces the need to bend a lift.

· Move smaller loads of snow at a time. The average shovelful of snow can weigh 20 pounds or more, so lifting less should provide some relief.

· Push the snow as much as you can to displace it. Should you have to lift it, bend at the knees. Do not twist or throw the snow over your shoulder or you risk back injury.

· Take a break every few minutes to catch your breath and have some water. It is easy to become dehydrated or overheated while shoveling, but not know it due to the cold.

· Wear the proper footwear to avoid falls on ice and snow. Many injuries occur due to falls on slippery surfaces.

· For those who are not physically fit enough to shovel snow, consider investing in a snow blower or pay to have the snow removed.

For all your excavating needs in Maryland  this winter call Scaggs Site Development AT11C685

shoveling in southern maryland

Using an ergonomic shovel can
help you avoid back injuries while
shoveling snow.

7011 Briscoe Turn Rd., Owings, MD 20736