Lifting and moving loads and objects is something we all do every day and frequently without thinking. Often, it’s not until something goes wrong and we suffer a pulled muscle or a strain that we’re reminded just how important it is to look after our backs. We’ve collected together our top tips on how to take extra care when moving heavy or awkward loads to try to make sure lifting can be as safe as possible.
We’ve seen some excellent advice on lifting and handling objects safely from the NHS which can be found here: NHS Lifting Tips and for guidance on lifting and handling at work, the Health and Safety Executive have these: Good Handling Techniques
If you know you have to move a large load, do be sure to check the weight of it first. Plan your route and ensure that any trip hazards or obstacles are cleared out of your path to avoid extra time managing the load you’re lifting. If the load is too heavy for one person, enlist the help of another person or consider using additional lifting aids to help. Our CAMBA Moova and HandiMoova 2in1 are designed to take some of the strain of lifting and moving, when objects are just too tricky, bulky or heavy to manoeuvre alone. Our innovative CAMBA technology, means the karts/trolleys we have will walk up and down stairs and across bumpy and uneven terrain. Sometimes it’s important to let something else do the bulk of the heavy lifting for you.
Once you’ve cleared your route, pick up the load smoothly, avoiding any jerky movements that can cause strain and pressure on sensitive areas of your back, shoulders and neck. Bending through your knees and keeping the back straight is important; let your legs take the weight as you get into position to protect your back. Keeping your back straight and taking small steps while you move can help to keep the weight evenly balanced and distribute the load pressure equally.
Where you can try to keep your load close to you, this keeps the centre of gravity as central as possible protecting you from over reaching and strain. Some loads can be bulky, misshapen and awkward to get a firm grip on, keeping control of your hold will help you move smoothly and serve to further protect your back.
If you twist while lifting you can cause injury to yourself, sometimes this can be quite severe. Anyone who has ever suffered with a back injury will tell you it’s best to avoid it and it can take a long time to repair. Keeping your back straight with good posture will help you to focus on not twisting. Put the object or load down in the same smooth manner as you lifted it, try to let your knees bend as you bend down.
These tips remain the same if you are using lifting or moving equipment such as our HandiMoova 2in1 to take the weight for the main part of the move. Lift your object into the trolley or kart you are using and once at your destination follow the same procedure to safely unload. Safer lifting really could help to protect and maintain the health of your back.