Planting bulbs before winter doesn’t have to cause you back pain in Woodbridge

back pain woodbridge nj

The changing of the seasons means watching as most natural plant life appears to take a temporary period of hibernation, only to be reborn again in the spring. For those of you that garden, this can be a particularly exciting silver lining, as planting bulbs now can lead to massive rewards of bright colors once the warm weather returns. If you haven’t done so already, it’s not too late to plant bulbs in your garden before the weather gets too cold, but be sure to take steps to avoid back pain in Woodbridge, NJ when doing so.

The more bulbs you plant now, the more your garden will pop with stunning colors come springtime, and this opportunity to get your hands dirty can also be seen as the last chance to garden for the next few months. So in that light, you certainly don’t want to overdo it and wind up with an injury that can really put a damper on your winter.

Gardening requires a number of movements that can increase the chances of injury, and the back is the most vulnerable to injury and pain due to all the bending over required when planting bulbs. The upper legs, shoulders and wrists are also worked out while gardening, and too much straining of any of these areas can result in pain. This is why planting bulbs, like all other aspects of gardening, should be treated as a physical activity.

With this in mind, it’s important to take certain precautions before, during and after planting bulbs to reduce your chance of injuries like back pain in Woodbridge, NJ:

  • Before beginning, perform the following stretches, each for a count of four:
    • Shoulder roll-move your shoulders up, back, down and forward in a circle
    • Upper back stretch-put your hands on your hips and simulate touching your elbows behind your back, lifting your head up
    • Sky reach-put your hands over your head and reach up as high as you can, feeling the stretch in your arms and upper back
    • Lower back stretch-bend forward and try to touch your toes
    • Hamstring stretch-take a giant step and lean forward on one foot, the other foot behind you, until you feel the stretch along your hamstring muscles, thighs and lower back
  • Use a kneepad or kneeler to protect your knees and hold your back as straight as possible when reaching down to plant bulbs
  • Vary your routine, so you don’t keep your body in one position for too long, which can place undue stress on your joints, and take breaks every 5-10 minutes
  • Use a trowel with a cushioned grip or a long-handled bulb planter that allows you to dig the planting holes with minimal bending and kneeling
  • Always try to bend at the knees and hips while tightening your abs, and avoid bending at the back as much as possible

It’s great to get in your yard and get your last licks of gardening before it’s too late, but planting bulbs should not cause you an injury. Follow these tips to avoid back pain in Woodbridge, Somerville, Union and Edison, NJ, or contact Arrow Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation at 732-388-4184 for more information or to schedule an appointment.

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