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Snow Shoveling Safety Tips

Many orthopedic injuries are a result of improper shoveling techniques.  Here are a few snow shoveling safety tips to stay safe and healthy while shoveling snow.
  • Use an ergonomic shovel- a standard straight shovel requires more bending at your back and more use of the arms
  • Use your legs and core- don’t try to muscle the snow with your low back and shoulders
  • Shovel small amounts of snow at a time- small amounts require less energy and less strength to lift and manipulate the snow
  • Don’t twist your back- move the body as a unit… twisting and bending is the leading cause for back injury
  • Shovel in timed intervals- extended times can result in injury and overexhaustion
Trying to tackle too much snow at once or using poor body mechanics can lead to injuries including
  • Low back pain
  • Shoulder pain
  • Herniated lumbar disc
  • Rotator cuff tears
Shoveling taxes the entire system- just like exercise and weight training.  Overexertion or too much work load can result in cardiopulminary issues in individuals who already have significant heart and lung dysfunctions.  Overexertion to the heart and lungs can result in
  • Angina
  • Shortness of breath
  • Lightheadedness
  • Heart Attack
  • Loss of consciousness
Listen to your body while working in the snow.  If you already suffer from heart or lung disease, consult your physician before working in the snow.  Utilize friends and family to assist you during large snow falls.  For more information regarding  injury prevention while working in the snow or performing other outside activities, contact one of our Doctors of Physical Therapy at either our Lagrange or Poughkeepsie, NY locations at


Moriarty Physical Therapy is a premier physical therapy center located in New York’s Hudson Valley. To find out more about physical therapy or to book your first appointment with a physical therapist, contact Moriarty Physical Therapy at (845) 454-4137.

Schedule a FREE 15-minute Exploration Visit

Come visit one of our physical therapy clinics in New York or North Carolina and one of our Doctors of Physical Therapy will do a 15-minute consultation to see if physical therapy is right for you. In the consultation, we’ll help determine the source of pain and movement restrictions to see if you would benefit from physical therapy or might need the assistance of another healthcare professional. If so, we’ll make a referral and help speed up achieving your health goal.

You have nothing to lose; the screening is free! And if physical therapy could help you, we can perform the examination right then–even without a prescription–with Direct Access (covered by insurance).

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