Moving is hard work and, even if you use the services of a professional moving company, involves plenty of bending, reaching, lifting and carrying – all of which can take a toll on the body.
Lifting heavy items is especially risky and can lead to a range of musculoskeletal injuries, from strains or sprains to compressed or slipped discs.
Heavy or improper lifting is notorious for causing back injuries. It can also lead to range of other injury types, from strained abdominal muscles to wrist injuries.
Get the right gear
If you plan on moving heavy items, on your own or with another person, it’s a good idea to investigate basic equipment that could make the process safer and easier.
Some examples are lifting straps and moving blankets or pads. These can reduce the need for really heavy lifting and shoving. Another highly recommended item of moving equipment is a moving trolley.
Rent a moving trolley online
Whether you need to move individual heavy items or stacked boxes, a moving trolley – also sometimes called a dolly – can help protect you from injuries.
A trolley can also make the moving process faster and easier. Because you can stack three or four boxes on a trolley, you can move more boxes at a time, with much less effort.
At Ecobox, you can rent a trolley online, at the same time as ordering moving boxes and any packing supplies you need. We’ll deliver it to your door and, once you’ve finished moving it, collect it again.
Pack with your back in mind
It can be tempting to fill any moving box to capacity. It’s also tempting to keep “like” items, such as books, in the same boxes, even if this means ending up with very heavy boxes.
Instead, it’s best to pack with your back in mind. Ideally, try to keep packed boxes to a maximum weight of 10 to 15 kilograms each.
Items above this weight, and items that are bulky or awkward to carry, should generally be lifted by a minimum of two people or left to the professionals to move.
If you end up with a few boxes that are significantly over the recommended weight, it’s a good idea to label them clearly. This helps protect you and others, ensuring you know to take extra precautions when moving them.
Practice the proper lifting technique
It’s vital to use the proper technique for lifting heavy items. During a household or office move, it can pay to focus on using the right technique for all lifting – even repeated lifting of smaller loads can put strain on your muscles, joints and spine.
To avoid injuring your back during a move, follow these basic lifting guidelines:
- position your feet shoulder-width apart, with one foot slightly in front of the other
- squat down, bending at the hips and knees but keeping your back straight; if necessary, put one knee on the floor and your other knee in front of you
- get a good grip on the item and lift it slowly by straightening your hips and knees; don’t twist as you lift
- hold the load close to your body, at about the level of your stomach
- take small steps, keeping your shoulders in line with your hips as you move.
- to set down the load, squat by bending your knees and hips only.
Rope in family or friends
Ideally, don’t do all the heavy work on your own. Ask family members or friends to give you a helping hand. With help from others and the proper equipment, you’ll be able to manage the packing and moving process with much less chance of injury to your back.
At Ecobox, we offer convenient, affordable moving boxes and packing supplies, as well as online rental of moving trolleys. Contact us for more information or get started now.