The twisting, hauling and crouching of our weekly cleaning routine can sometimes be more strenuous than hitting the gym. But, for those with back pain, it can often be too much, causing muscle strain that leaves them bent and hobbled for days. Protect your spine with some helpful tips and a few tweaks to the way you work.
Believe it or not, vacuuming can be one of the worst chores for your back, primarily because of the repetitive twisting and turning involved. The solution? Stand proud when vacuuming and use your legs rather than your back to move forward and back. It also helps to use both hands to minimize the twisting motion because it keeps your upper and lower back more stable.
Most mops aren’t ergonomically correct. They’re too short and you need to bend to varying degrees to get the job done. Not to mention the repeated effort required to squeeze out the mop. This puts a lot of strain on your back. The solution? Find a mop that has an extra-long handle so you can stand as upright as possible. Good posture supports the body equally allowing the muscles surrounding the spine to be balanced.
Doing the Dishes
While washing dishes after a meal can help with digestion, it can also put a heavy strain on your back. Standard countertops are seldom the correct height (around belt level), so many of us stoop or stretch to get the job done. The solution? Build strength as you stand. Prop one foot up on a stool, or open the cabinet below the sink and prop your foot on the ledge. Use the sink to stabilize yourself if needed and alternate legs every few minutes. This will relieve some of the pressure on your spine.
Cleaning the Tub
Even those without back pain are tested when it comes to cleaning the tub. Low to the ground, the tub has tough to reach corners and requires added elbow grease to get clean. The solution? Resist the traditional way of cleaning the tub. Reaching over the side of the tub on your knees is bound to hurt your back. Instead, squat or sit right in the tub, or on a kid-sized stool and clean from there.
Making your Bed
This task is virtually impossible to do with a bad back. Aside from the stretching and twisting involved, it also takes a lot of pulling and lifting to make the bed. The solution? Just take your time. Don’t reach across the bed to smooth sheets. Instead, physically move around the bed one corner at a time, smoothing sheets as you go. And, don’t be afraid to ask for help!
For even more fabulous cleaning tips to keep your home running smoothly and mess-free, be sure to check out our blog curated by the cleaning experts at Molly Maid Canada!