Physical therapy clinics throughout Bethesda and other areas like this are now crowded with people that have injured themselves shoveling snow.
Back injuries are the most commonly injured area when shoveling however many other areas can become irritated as well.
Why does this so commonly occur?
These injuries are often due to the approach that people take to shoveling snow. Most do not think of this as a workout however our body’s experience many of the same stressors as when weight training.
Do you warm up to shovel the driveway as you would to train? Do you think about your lifting technique when shoveling snow as you would when in the gym?
If the answer is no to either of these questions then it may be time to change your approach the next time there is a heavy snowfall.
Furthermore, are you trained to perform outdoors in cold weather?
If you are constantly training in a warm gym then you likely are not. Your body functions differently in the cold. It likely is prioritizing staying warm over performing optimally. The body does not need to worry about this when training in the gym.
This does not mean that you have to begin working out in the freezing cold like Rocky in Rocky IV. However, it does increase the need for a comprehensive warmup. Furthermore, a well-trained body with a solid baseline level of strength will make you more resilient to injuries in higher risk situations such as these.
Therefore, do not ignore the basics of good strength training in your exercise regimen!