Safely Lifting and Moving Loads
Back injuries are very common. They can happen at any time or from the simplest of tasks. Here are a few tips to help decrease the risk of injuring your back from lifting or moving items:
Assess the load before attempting to lift
- Is the load too heavy to be lifted by 1 person?
- Is the load too large/bulky to be lifted by 1 person?
- If the load is too heavy/large/bulky for 1 person, ask a co-worker or use a dolly to help
Ensure that the path you need to take is clear from anything that can cause a trip or a slip
It is easier to push a load if you can
Your vision should not be obstructed
Confirm the area that you need to set the load down on is ready to accept the load.
To pick up the load:
- Center yourself over the object
- Keep your feet as close to the object as possible
- Keep your body close to the object, as well, to minimize use of your back
- Squad or kneel to the object, keeping your arms as close to your side as possible
- As you stand, keep your core tight and exhale as you rise
As you move the load, keep it at your belly button height
Keep your head looking forward
Never twist while lifting or carrying the load