With winter on the way, we all start to have dreams of hot chocolate and a blazing fire in the fireplace while a picturesque snowfall covers the outside world with a blanket of fresh snow. Of course, once the snow is done falling that means it’s time to get out and clear the driveway and sidewalks!
Every winter thousands of people manage to injure their backs or even worse while shoveling snow. Snow removal is a necessary evil, but it’s also a physical activity that uses muscles and stamina you may not be accustomed to.
It’s best to let a pro do the heavy lifting. Snow removal services, like those offered by the Ohio Valley Group, ease the burden of snow removal, save you the backache, and let you get back to your hot chocolate in peace.
What is the best way to approach snow removal?
The key to avoiding overly strenuous activity when removing snow is to approach it incrementally. When it’s a light, dryer snow, you may be able to shovel your walks and driveway in stages. By removing it an inch or two at a time, you avoid moving the added weight of ten or more inches. Even though you’ll need to do it several times, experts agree that this is the best approach.
To save your back, always be aware of the bend in your knees and the straightness of your spine. It’s critical to avoid twisting. Another tip is to always shovel lighter loads, making sure that your shovel isn’t packed too heavily with snow.
Whatever you do, don’t shovel too soon after waking up. Professionals agree that a slipped disc injury is far more likely to occur in the morning because of the build-up of fluid in your disc caused by lying down all night.
Remember to get back to your hot chocolate often. Frequent breaks will save you from getting too exhausted. If you are elderly, call a neighborhood youth or a snow removal professional like those at the Ohio Valley Group. You deserve to enjoy the winter wonderland from the comfort of your living room!
Underestimating the strain and physical effort snow shoveling can cause could lead to serious injury, including heart attacks. Make sure that you are up to the task, in shape enough to take it on.
What about using a snowblower?
Snowblowers are very useful tools to remove large quantities of snow in a short amount of time. They are much better than shoveling when it comes to very wet and heavy snow. Always remember to use caution when using a snowblower to prevent injury – keep the shields in place and keep your hands and feet away from all moving parts.
Before winter arrives in force, check your snowblower to make sure that it is in good condition and ready for use. Control who has access to it, and use careful judgment as to who will operate the machine. Using a snowblower can be more physical than you expect.
Keep an eye out for stray objects on your driveway and sidewalks. If they get churned into your snowblower you could not only damage the machine but also cause damage if the objects are thrown in the air. Always make sure that the chute is pointed away from buildings, people, and vehicles to prevent any damage caused by an inadvertently thrown rock.
How about using rock salt to melt ice?
Once you get the top layers of snow removed, you may encounter ice directly on paved or concrete surfaces. It’s a great idea to throw down some rock salt to make sure that sidewalks don’t become too slippery and dangerous.
Be careful not to overuse the salt though – all of the gorgeous plants that you’ve spent the rest of the year cultivating could be destroyed by an abundance of salt in the soil.
Kitty litter can be a great alternative to rock salt. Spreading a healthy layer will provide the perfect amount of traction on icy surfaces. Many a driver has been saved by a sprinkling of kitty litter under tires that need traction to pull away from snowdrifts. Keeping a large container of kitty litter in the back of your car also provides extra weight that may help you from getting stuck in the first place.
Are there resources that can help me with snow removal?
In the end, it’s always best to call in the pros. A snow removal service like that provided by the Ohio Valley Group will make your life much easier, save you the physical strain, and let you enjoy the winter wonderland instead.
No need to let a backache or more severe injury keep you from enjoying the fresh snow. Give us a call today to see how we can help!