Protect Your Back By Following These 5 Tips!
Part of doing the job right involves using the best safety practices at all times. Although we do our best to follow these rules both on and off the job site, accidents do happen. According to the Infrastructure Health & Safety Association, 25% of all construction injuries involve the back. Over half of these incidents are caused because of improper lifting techniques and lifting objects that are too heavy to handle properly. By following proper lifting mechanics, you can drastically reduce your chances of being injured. To keep your back at its best, make sure you follow these tips.
Pushing & Pulling
Whenever possible, try to push loads rather than pull them toward you. When you pull objects, you’re putting your arms in an unnatural position. This increases the odds that you’ll get hurt because you can easily over exert yourself when pulling. Numerous studies have also confirmed that it’s easier for you to push something away than pull it towards you.
Stop Being so One-Sided
Carrying objects on one side of your body is a habit that can lead to nasty results. By having an uneven weight distribution, you’re forcing the muscles on one side of your body to do all the work. This also causes you to twist your spine for prolonged periods of time and puts pressure on the vertebrae.
Twist & Shout
If you need to move your body while carrying a load, use you feet to pivot. When you twist with your back, you run the risk of putting it in an unnatural position. Too much twisting can cause muscle strains and herniated discs, two injuries that may stick with you for a long time.
Don’t be a hero.
If you’ve got a load that is too heavy or has an awkward weight distribution, ask a co-worker to give you hand. Taking the time to do will reduce your risk of injuring yourself. Also, if you see someone struggling with their load, be proactive and and give them a hand. Like the old saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure/
Back Belts Aren’t the Answer
Back Belts have become a popular option for those with lower back problems. But according to a recent study, there is no conclusive evidence that suggest they help with safety. Besides not being PPE, the problem with back belts is that they do not encourage proper lifting techniques. According to the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health & Safety, back belts can give the wearer a false sense of support and mislead the you into thinking that you can handle a heavier load. The only way we can safely decrease the rate of getting hurt is to follow the rules when it comes to lifting mechanics.
What did you think of these back safety tips? Do you have one that deserves to be mentioned? Let us know on either our Facebook page or our Twitter page.