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Body Tips for Working out in Your Yard

By Stephen R. Farris

From the beginning of time, humans have been obsessed with tending to and maintaining their lawns and gardens. Even in biblical times, there's mention in religious texts about beautiful gardens. Most all European castles and estates display beautifully manicured lawns and gardens dating back to the days they were built. It was a must, so it seems. 

Even today, some of those structures that still remain -- and newer ones -- have picturesque lawns and gardens that are simply breathtaking. However, it still takes manpower to keep up the maintenance on them, as well as our own lawns and gardens we might have at home.

In order to do the work, we have to use our fingers, hands, feet, legs, arms, back and shoulders. Pretty much our entire body is involved in the digging, planting, arranging, mowing, weeding and raking process. Unfortunately, we begin to develop aches and pains associated with this type of work and as we grow older, we might start showing signs of arthritis -- not necessarily related to gardening, by the way.

But if you do have aches and pains on occasion from doing yard work, there are ways to make the tasks a little easier on your body.

Stretching

Doing stretching exercises is not just limited to when you work out. You can also benefit by doing a few stretching exercises before starting any type of yard work too. Just like any work where your body is involved, stretching will help prepare it for the task at hand. The last thing you want is a pulled muscle or tendon, and worse yet, a strained back.

Innovation

Thinking outside the box may not only make your lawn and garden look unique, but it can also help ease some of the stress on your body as well. One innovative technique when it comes to gardening is to build raised boxes for your plants and flowers. By doing this, you can prevent added wear and tear on your back, knees and legs. You might try planting things in hanging baskets. They're easier to water and maintain without having to get down on your knees and bending over so much.

Posture Is Important

Maintaining good posture is important whether you are working, exercising or simply relaxing. It's doubly important since yard work almost always requires you to do some type of lifting. Remember, face the object you're lifting square-on. Stand up straight, bend down with your knees, and come back up using your legs. Make sure your back is not hunched either and that you're not trying to lift objects at an angle.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Pasadena, Tex.

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