Protect Your Back When Doing Fall Cleanup

Fall is here and so is the chance for a garden and yard cleanup! Soon, the leaves will be blowing off the trees and before we know it, we’ll be spending the entire day raking or cleaning the yard. This can cause excessive strain on the body, especially if good form isn’t used consistently throughout the day.

The good news is that your yard can get cleaned up without causing injury or pain to your body.

Here’s how:

  • Warm up before you begin. Take a 10-minute walk to get your blood flowing and to loosen your muscles.
  • Take frequent breaks, and if you feel fatigue or strain, slow down or stop.  Don’t overdo it.
  • Use a wheelbarrow to move tools or heavy bags of leaves.
  • Don’t kneel on both knees. Keep one foot on the ground to give your back more stability. If you have to kneel, use kneepads or a pillow to absorb some of the pressure.
  • Change positions and take frequent breaks to avoid stiffness or cramping.
  • Practice proper body mechanics. Bend at your knees when you grab something or pull up a weed. While bending your knees, also contract your abdominal muscles to avoid straining your back.

Physical therapists are experts in posturing and lifting techniques. Before you start a project around your house, consider contacting your Sports PT expert to help you prevent injury. If it’s already too late, and you have pain from a household activity, contact us at to see how we can help get you back in action!