5 Tips for Healthy Gardening

woman gardening outside

No matter what time of year it is, there’s probably something to keep you busy in your yard. Whether it’s raking in the fall, readying plants for winter, planting in the spring, or weeding in the summer, having a garden can keep you busy. Gardening is great exercise, but it can also be tough on the body. Read on for our tips for staying healthy while gardening:

  1. Change position frequently. Try to avoid bending over for a prolonged period of time, and make sure to switch sides often. If you always pull weeds with your right arm, try doing a few with your left. When you find yourself consistently kneeling on your left knee, make sure to give your right knee a turn. Holding the same position for prolonged periods of time can be stressful on the body, so take breaks every once in a while to help yourself out.
  2. Remember to stretch. Besides changing position frequently, make sure to stretch often. If you’ve been looking down at the ground for a while, stretch the opposite way by peering up at the sky. Or if you’ve been hunching over for a while, stand up and lean backward to move your back in the opposite direction. These simple tricks can go a long way in preventing soreness.
  3. Use aids such as wheelbarrows or hoses. Holding a clump of branches or a large watering can may seem easy at first, but once you find yourself walking across your entire yard, these loads may get heavy. Use wheelbarrows to carry large loads and hoses to water plants that aren’t nearby to take a load off your joints.
  4. Protect your knees. If you find yourself kneeling down frequently, consider adding a pad to kneel on. Your knees will thank you for saving them from the hard ground. If this still isn’t cutting it, consider adding raised beds to your garden.
  5. Start slowly. An overwhelming amount of injuries occur in people who do too much too soon. If it’s been a while since you’ve gone out and raked or cut down branches, don’t do it all at once. Start slowly by breaking up tasks throughout the day or even spreading them out for several days. You’ll be happy you slowed down if you can prevent injury and keep at it, rather than getting hurt by overdoing things and forcing yourself to take a break.

If you have pain in your shoulder from pulling weeds, are nervous about kneeling to plant bulbs, or have another concern about gardening, our team at MOTION will be able to help get you back safely to enjoying the great outdoors.