OSEA Safety Blog

We've Got Your Back!: Ergonomics & Proper Lifting Techniques

Tuesday, February 11, 2020 Amanda Coniglio

Protecting our spine has been a hot topic these days! Observe proper posture, use your legs, don’t lift heavy objects by yourself – so many pieces of advice out there on how to protect your back on the job but sometimes we fall short on the execution due to lack of time and lack of focus. We all lift, hold, carry, push and pull on a daily basis and if we don’t focus on the proper techniques to do so, there’s a good chance we’ll be sidelined with a back injury. Remember, just because your back doesn’t hurt right now doesn’t mean it won’t in the future.

Some easy techniques to avoiding painful (sometimes debilitating) back injuries include:

  • wearing supportive shoes,
  • using equipment to assist in the lift/carry (i.e. dollies, carts, forklifts),
  • keep objects/loads between hip and shoulder height,
  • keep all loads close to and in front of the body,
  • do not twist while carrying a load,
  • ask for help with large and/or heavy loads,
  • consider a quick warm-up before lifting that includes stretching your back and legs.

Be conscientious of proper ergonomics while performing lifts. Take the time to focus on the above techniques and your back will thank you!

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