7 Steps to Safe Lifting

Lifting things in the wrong way can make your back hurt and cause injuries to your muscles, spine, or joints. Even when you're lifting something that doesn't seem heavy, you could get hurt if you do it the wrong way.

Here are some smart ways to lift objects:

  • Plan before you lift: Before you pick something up, make sure you know where you're taking it and that you have a clear path so you don't have to move around too much while holding something heavy.
  • Keep the item close to you: Hold the item close to your body. This makes you steadier when you lift.
  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart: Keep your feet a bit apart, about the width of your shoulders. It helps you stay balanced. If your feet are too close, you might wobble, and if they're too far apart, it's harder to move.
  • Use your legs to lift: Your legs are strong, so use them! Keep your back straight and bend your knees to go up and down. You can practice this before lifting something heavy.
  • Tighten your tummy muscles: Squeeze your tummy muscles to help keep your back in the right position when you lift.
  • Ask for help: If something is too heavy or awkward to lift by yourself, find someone to help you.
  • Consider wearing a belt or back support: If you often lift heavy things, a special belt can help you keep your back safe and in a good position when you lift.

If you are injured after lifting, remember, effective management and early intervention can make a significant difference in your recovery. Don't hesitate to seek professional care and take the right steps toward healing.

If you want to know more about back injuries and how to treat them, you can call Carolina Orthopaedic & Sports Medicine Center's back doctor at 704-865-0077 or request an appointment online.