1. When you are about to lift an object regardless if it is heavy or not you should always plan ahead. Make sure the object is something you can move by yourself. Never hesitate to ask for help or use other forms of assistance.
2. When you have decided it is safe to lift the object by yourself, it is time to prepare your body for it. Make sure the object is close to the body, as it will make lifting stronger and more stable.
3. Establish a solid base by having feet shoulder width apart.
4. Bend your knees and keep your back straight like you are performing a squat. Keep your eye leveled and look straight ahead.
5. As you raise the object contract your abdominal muscles slightly, this will protect your core and lower back.
6. Lift with your legs and not with your low back. Never bend backwards with your legs in a static position, this will put almost 100% of the stress to your lower back.
To place object onto the floor reverse the steps. Make sure always move with your legs not your back, and have your abdominal muscles contracted at all times.
**Never flex forward and twist at the same time. This is high risk for low back injuries, disc herniation or sprains.**
Common Strengthening Exercises:
Core – Flatten Back then Straight Leg Raise:
Lie on your back with your legs extended out.
Contract your core muscles and flatten spine.
Without changing the position of your pelvis raise leg
Return that leg and repeat with the other.
Bridge Single Leg Raise:
Lie with your back in neutral position against the floor with your abdominal muscles pulled in. Bend your legs so that they are at right angles to the ground.
Raise your pelvis off the ground while maintaining the neutral arch in your back.
Without any movement, slowly extend one leg and hold for 3 secs. Alternate 4x while keeping your pelvis raised and hips square throughout. Slowly lower hips to ground so that butt touches floor first. Then repeat.
Do not let your pelvis tilt side to side.
Lie on your stomach.
Raise yourself up so that you’re resting on your forearms and your knees.
Align your head and neck with your back, and place your shoulders directly above your elbows.
Tighten your abdominal muscles.
Raise your right arm off the floor.
Hold for three deep breaths.
Repeat with your left arm.
Common Stretching Exercises:
Stretch – Quadricep:
Lie on your side.
Bring your lower leg up towards your chest to help maintain neutral pelvis.
Grab onto your other foot behind your back until you feel your quads stretching.
Stop if you feel pressure in your lower back.
Stretch – Supine Glute Major:
Lying on your back bring your knee up towards your chest and then across your body slightly to move the stretch to your buttocks.
Bend your knees and lift your legs until your thighs are above your hips.
Press your palms into the floor and lower your legs to the left.
Go as far as possible while keeping your right shoulder glued to the floor, then bring your legs back to center.
Next, lower them to the right.
Stretch – Chest and Back Rotation:
Same as windshield wiper, but hold for 45s at the end range of motion.