Winter is almost here, which means freezing temperatures, lots of snow, and of course, the busy holiday season. But, between shoveling snow and driving to meet family for the holidays, you may be more prone to injuries during this time of year. To avoid having to spend the beginning of the New Year recovering from injuries, follow these safety tips from the physical therapists at Cherry Creek Wellness Center:
Ice and snow can make the ground incredibly slippery during this time of year, so you must use extra caution when walking around outdoors. Before the winter season is upon us, make sure you invest in a pair of shoes or boots with treads on the bottom to help you stay upright. But, if you do feel like you’re about to slip, try to position yourself so you fall onto your side or buttocks, which is far less painful than falling on your back or face.
Be flexible with traveling plans.
Driving during the winter can also be more dangerous because of the icy road conditions, so even a minor fender bender could land you in the physical therapist’s office for months. Reduce the risk of getting into a car accident by being flexible with your travel plans. The weather can be unpredictable during this time of year, so it’s best to be flexible so you can change plans to avoid snowstorms heading in your direction. You should also plan on leaving fairly early so you don’t feel pressured to drive faster to get to your final destination. Read more winter driving tips
Shoveling snow can be strenuous, so it’s important to exercise caution to avoid injuries. Before you begin, spend between five to ten minutes warming up your body with gentle stretches. Once you start to shovel, focus on using your arms and legs instead of relying on your back, which should be kept straight the entire time. Remember to pace yourself the entire time. Shoveling snow may not seem difficult, but snow is surprisingly heavy, so this exercise can wear you down pretty quick. If your body begins to get tired, you are more likely to slip out of proper form and suffer from injuries, so stop once you’ve reached your limit.
Wear protective gear.
If you plan on participating in any winter sports such as skiing or sledding, always wear a helmet and other protective gear. Accidents happen to everyone—it doesn’t matter how experienced you are—but wearing protective gear can drastically reduce the risk of you suffering serious injuries. Every winter sport requires a helmet, and if you’re skiing or snowboarding, you should also be wearing knee pads, wrist guards, and hip pads. Hockey players should be outfitted in shin pads, shoulder pads, and elbow pads to protect themselves while on the ice.
At Cherry Creek Wellness Center, we’re devoted to keeping our patients safe and pain free throughout the seasons. Are you interested in learning more about our services? Contact us
today by calling 303-333-3493.