Professional athletes prepare their bodies for major events, to help them perform better, as well as to avoid injuries. This is the same approach you should take before moving everything you own to a new residence, particularly if you deal with chronic back pain. Moving doesn't have to throw your back out or leave you in days of agony afterwards if you incorporate the following tactics into your moving itinerary.
Space Jobs Out
While it may leave your house upended, start prepping your move as early as you can. For example, packing seasonal clothing, collections, art, photographs, and anything else that you don't need every day, even a month before moving means working at your own pace. If you're not under the stress of a deadline, you're less apt to rush and push your body too far. As soon as you know that you won't need an item, pull it from the laundry or dishwasher and set it aside for moving. Make it a gradual, controlled process that you can stop and start as your back pain allows.
Elevate Packing Boxes
Before you start filling your boxes, elevate them to waist level. This will avoid all the bending that can really beat up your back, as well as making the entire process easier to manipulate and see. Also, pack while seated, if possible, to lessen the burden on your lower back muscles even further.
While you might think lifting the sofa is the worst moving task for your back, bending over to fill boxes is way up there in the pain-inducing category. You also might eventually pack, lift, carry and empty dozens of boxes, each a bearable weight, but tremendously hard on your lower back muscles when taken cumulatively. If your chronic back pain is too severe, don't bother packing at all; instead, hire a company to do it for you. Movers and packers are worth their literal weight in gold when it comes to sparing you months (or more) of anguish. Go to this site and others for more information on packing services.
Invest In A Back Brace
Studies show a properly fitted back brace reduces pain and increases mobility, and may also leave you less reliant on medication. The brace should serve as an aid while you're moving, but not be viewed as something that enables you to lift improperly or handle too much weight without consequences. A brace simply supports you externally during the lifting process, it doesn't give you super strength.
Avoid Makeshift Sleeping Surfaces
If you plan your move properly, you shouldn't be snoozing on your neighbor's couch or napping in the back seat of your car anyway, but many people find themselves ill prepared when it comes time to setting up a new home. Any uncomfortable sleeping arrangement could leave you with lower back pain, yet with all the stretching and lifting you're likely to do while moving, those arrangements will be far worse.
Pamper Your Latissimus Dorsi
Before and after moving, soak in a hot bath or splurge on a therapeutic massage. If you normally see a chiropractor, let them know about the big move so they can schedule you an extra appointment or offer helpful advice. The latissimus dorsi muscle covers a large area of your back and is responsible for the lifting you'll be doing, thus, it will help to give it a little extra TLC at this time.
Discover Back-Strengthening Exercises
As far off from your move as possible, consider starting an exercise routine specifically designed to strengthen your back. If you find it helpful, you can even keep the routine up later. Ask your physician first, if necessary, but you should be able to find something you can do to work the back's supportive muscles without much strain.
Strategize The Terrain
If you've got a long path to the door as you're moving in, leave things at the halfway point. If you're facing multiple flights of stairs, leave boxes and other things at a certain story, then take a break. The longer you just keep carrying items, the more your body is likely to fatigue before you're finished, meaning you won't be properly using your arm, leg and back muscles.
Reduce Other Stress
Stress compounds the physical problems you already have. It may also manifest as new areas of pain. In the weeks immediately before, during and after your move, try to manage your stress as much as possible in order to avoid extra pain and tension in your back.
At least temporarily, change the focus of every day to accommodate your back, so that you're more physically prepared come moving day. Not only will you save yourself a lot of aches and pains, you might even prevent a more serious injury from occurring to your already problematic back.