Summer is a great time to get outdoors and increase your physical activity level. You can take part in activities in your own backyard such as gardening, or you can be more adventurous and go hiking, running or golfing. As you get immersed in summertime activities, make sure that you are thinking about and taking care of your back at the same time. Here are a few simple tips that will help you keep your back healthy throughout the summer months as you engage in more physical activities.
Always Warm Up
Before you do any physical activity, even gardening, you need to get your muscles flowing and warm them up. If you don't warm up your muscles a bit before you get going, you increase the chance that you could pull or damage your back muscles and joints. Do a few gentle stretches before you start any physical activity.
Learn The Proper Technique
A lot of back pain caused by summer activities is not a result of being too active; more often than not, it is because you are failing to use the proper technique for the activity. When you engage in the proper technique for the activity you are participating in, the chance that you will injure your back decreases.
For example, if you are gardening, it is better to kneel on a pad and do your gardening than it is for you to bend over to pull all the weeds. Bending over will stress out your back; kneeling will take the pressure off your back and allow you to more evenly distribute it across the rest of your body.
Or, if you are going hiking, you need to keep your back straight and your shoulders back. If you are wearing a backpack, it should not pull or strain your back. Any backpack you use should have supportive straps across the shoulders and hips to evenly distribute the weight and responsibility to your entire body for your backpack.
Make sure you are using the proper technique for all activities that you participate in this summer. Using proper technique will help you keep your back in shape.
Cool Down & Don't Overdo It
It can be tempting to try and do too much when the weather is great outside. However, you shouldn't go from not being active at all to being extremely active all day. Slowly work and increase your level of physical activity over time. When you are done working out, take some time to stretch, slow your heartbeat and relax.
See Your Chiropractor
Finally, if you have back issues, make sure that you schedule a few appointments with your chiropractor throughout the summer. Your chiropractor can make sure that your back is aligned, and can provide you with pointers that will help you lessen the stress on your back this summer.