Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Injured Low Back Lifting

Strategies for safe lifting with a back injury include:

  • Look at the label and find out how much the object weighs.
  • Ask for help if you need it.
  • Plan the move in advance.
  • Stand closely to the object you wish to lift.
  • Keep your body weight over your feet while you lift.
  • Bend your knees and keep your elbows close to your body.
  • Lift with your legs while you keep your back straight.
  • Keep objects close to your body while lifting.
  • Lift the load smoothly, without jerking, tugging, or twisting.
  • Avoid twisting your back: keep your back straight while lifting.
  • Maintain balance: keep your feet one shoulder-width apart as you walk while carrying a heavy object.
  • Change direction by moving your feet. Do not change direction by twisting your back.
  • Observe the same technique when putting items down.
  • Use a back support: acts as a reminder to lift correctly, but does not decrease the risk for back injury.

Continue to Injured Low Back Posture

Last Updated: Nov 4, 2008 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Injured Low Back References
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  5. van der Roer N, Goossens ME, Evers SM, van Tulder MW. What is the most cost-effective treatment for patients with low back pain? A systematic review. Best Pract Res Clin Rheumatol. 2005 Aug;19(4):671-84. [15949783]
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  7. Wassell JT, Gardner LI, Landsittel DP, Johnston JJ, Johnston JM. A prospective study of back belts for prevention of back pain and injury. JAMA. 2000 Dec 6;284(21):2727-32. [11105177]
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