5 Snow Shoveling Safety Tips
For residents of Andover, snow shoveling seems to be a yearly tradition. Each year, snow makes its way to our lovely lawns at least for a few weeks. On some of the coldest winters, though, snow shoveling can be a bit of a chore. It may seem harmless to just get out there and shovel it off of your driveway, but there are many hidden dangers in snow shoveling. If you’re not careful, you could end up in the hospital. Here are 5 snow shoveling tips that can help keep you healthy and safe this winter.
Preparation Before the Snow
Pay attention to the weather reports. If you know you’re going to have a heavy snowfall, it’s wise to salt your driveway before it starts snowing. This prevents ice from forming on your driveway which can help prevent dangerous falls. Use salt, sand or deicing pellets for this task. If you didn’t get a chance to pretreat your driveway before the storm, make it a point to get out and start shoveling snow before it has a chance to melt down to ice.
You may not be aware of this, but snow shovelling is a vigorous activity. It’s very important to warm up your body before you start shovelling snow. Try going for a brisk walk or doing several squats beforehand. By doing this, you’ll get your body ready for the task. It’s dangerous to start start exercising heavily without properly warming up. You can get terrible cramps, over exert yourself, or even break a bone because you’re not warmed up.
Choose Your Shovel Carefully
We don’t recommend using any shovel in the garage to move snow. There are specific shovels made for snow shovelling. We recommend getting a shovel that is not too heavy and that is wide for pushing snow. The cold weather conditions combined with the overexertion of energy is a dangerous combination. Thus without the right shovel, you could end up expending too much energy which could lead to a heart attack. Be sure to pick up a snow shovel from your local hardware store. Trust us, your body will thank you for it.
Push, Don’t Lift
This may seem counter intuitive, but it’s better to push the snow rather than lift it. Pushing snow saves energy and helps you with longevity. Since you’re trying to get as much done as you can without overdoing it, do it wisely by pushing instead of lifting. We realize that sometimes, you have to put some force into your shoveling if the ice has become dense. So if you must lift, use caution! Handle it like you would lifting a heavy object by keeping your back straight, spreading out your feet, and move at a comfortable pace.
Hydration is key. It takes a lot to shovel snow. In just 15 minutes, you’ve done as much work as you would cycling for 30. Be sure to keep yourself well hydrated. Take breaks and make sure you don’t become dehydrated. Dehydration can exacerbate an already dangerous condition. Remember to drink water before and after shovelling snow as well.
Snow shovelling is a serious matter. We don’t recommend anyone with high blood pressure, diabetes, heart conditions, or anyone who has not been exercising try to do any amount of snow shovelling. If you need help getting snow off of your driveway, call T&B Lawn Care. We make it a point to be available to help with any residential or commercial winter needs because we know the dangers a snow storm can cause. Contact us today and find out how we can help.