Winter can be a pain

Winter is a very trying time when it comes to your back. The cold weather can cause us to huddle, drawing in on ourselves and tightening our muscles for warmth. Now, I’m not really sure that drawing in like that actually increases our warmth; apparently, it makes us feel as if it does. We may be trying to escape it.

Add on to that the layers and layers of clothes we wear. Lots of padding makes our bodies disappear in our sense of ourselves. The actual contours of the muscles and our bodily sensations go a bit numb because we are slightly entombed in our fleece and down coats!

And I haven’t even gotten to snow removal! The driveway and walkway can be a real obstacle to keeping your body loose. First of all, if you can, use a snow blower. If you do, remember to refrain from hunching your shoulders. Keep your elbows close in, hanging down, with a sense that your elbows are pointing towards your back (as opposed to extended too far in front of you). Make sure your head is not crunching down on your neck. Stop occasionally to make sure you are continuing to breathe.

As far as shovels are concerned, buy yourself one with that has a U-shaped handle, much like a lawnmower. This way you will not rotate your body as much. The snow is pushed forward and dumped forward as you lift the horizontal bar. If you must use a regular snow shovel, DO NOT rotate your body to dump the snow. Lift it right in front of you. Rotating your body carrying weight is a recipe for pain and stiffness.

With this info, you can enjoy the snow, not to mention your post-snow hot cocoa!