Springtime is a great time for gardening. This activity, however, often involves holding specific positions for long periods of time, which can strain your muscles and joints. To avoid the aches and pains of gardening, try these tips:
- Hamstring Stretch – Stretch your leg in front of you, keeping your knee straight and your heel propped on an elevated surface. Lean forward until you feel a stretch in the back of your thigh, or the hamstring muscle and hold for 15 seconds. Do this twice on each leg.
- Reach for the Sky – Weave your fingers together above your head with palms facing up. Lean to one side for 10 seconds then to the other. Do this three times.
- Tricep stretch – Stand with your chin tucked in and your right arm raised to complete elevation. With the arm still raised, place your right hand behind your neck by bending the elbow. Raise your left arm and place your left hand on the right elbow then pull the elbow toward the left side until a stretch is felt in the triceps. Hold for 30 seconds then switch arm positions.
- Observe proper body mechanics – Instead of bending for long periods, try kneeling. Also, alternate your stance to distribute the work to different muscles and keep your body balanced.