Gardening is one of the joyful things in life for many of us; planting flowers, tidying hedges and preparing the garden for summer. But the pain in the body can throw problems into any gardening plans.
That doesn’t mean you have to scrub gardening off your list. With a few simple exercises, you can enjoy gardening…without the pain.
Here are our 5 simple tips for pain-free gardening
1 – Warm-up
You’re about to put your body through a workout so warming up your muscle and joints beforehand can help prevent any aches and pains.
A gentle stretching exercise in which you lie down on your back, pull both knees towards your chest whilst bringing your head forward. This will stretch out the back and also ease up the muscles and joints in your legs and knees. Repeat this around 5 times and hold each stretch for 10 seconds.
After your warm-ups exercise, you can massage Emu Balm behind the knees, around the front of the knee caps and on the back area. This will help ease the muscles and joints to begin gardening.
2 – Lift with ease
Without thinking we lift and lug plants, pots and other garden equipment around incorrectly putting a strain on our muscles and joints especially in our backs.
To lift correctly start by getting into a squatting position, do not bend from the waist- make sure you bend from the knees. Use both hands to hold the object and if very heavy to lift make sure you have someone to help you. Keep the object close to your body so some of your body can take the weight and slowly straighten your legs as you come up from lifting.
Another tip is to only fill watering cans halfway full as lifting a full watering can cause strain on your muscles if you struggle to do this.
3 – Take regular breaks, stay hydrated and protect yourself from the sun.
When you are out enjoying the weather in the garden it is easy to lose track of time. Take a water bottle with you as a reminder to take frequent breaks and make sure you stay hydrated. By staying hydrated this allows your muscles to continue to function properly and they are less likely to swell up. Whilst taking a break maybe do some simple stretches of the body to allow it not to cease up. Fuel your body with drinks and healthy snacks. Also make sure you are protected from the sun, without realising we often get caught out and sunburn occurs. Make sure suntan lotion is applied regularly and if you do get caught out apply Skin Relief Oil to the affected areas to help ease the discomfort of sunburn (it can also be applied to ease the irritation of insect bites and stings).
4- Use the right tools in the garden
Gardening doesn’t have to be hard work. Using the correct tools can have a massive effect on helping the body to not suffer by any damage or injury. Long armed/ adjustable sheers, trowels and other tools are easily available to buy and can reduce the bending of the body. Use a wheelbarrow to move heavy plants and bags of dirt and other equipment around the garden instead of trying to carry them. Pace yourself throughout the day and spread your gardening over a few days instead of trying to do it all in one.
5- Body positions.
When possible change position as frequently as possible. Special care needs to be taken if you are working in a small area for a period of time. Prolonged bending or repetitive twisting can put a lot of stress on your muscles and joints. Use a small stool to sit on if possible. Protect your knees by using the cushioned kneeling mats when gardening.
When digging larger areas, try and use your legs as much as possible in a stable squatting position. Also, regularly change the direction you are facing so you are not straining the same area for a prolonged period of time.
Why not treat yourself at the end of a busy gardening day to a well-earned soak in Emu salts– Just add 1 scoop to a bath and lie back and relax, feeling the tension and strain of your muscles ease.
After you have dried off use our Emu Balm– a natural combination of emu oil, coconut oil and essential oils known for their healing properties to rub into your back, shoulder, knees and hands to help the aches and strains of the muscles after a busy day.