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Many people who live with arthritis and the pain that accompanies it avoid physical activity in hopes of reducing the pain. Swollen fingers, elbows, knees and an achy back can make the process of gardening a challenge. But there are a few ways you can make your beloved pastime more joint friendly.
Use the Right Tools
Using the right tools is crucial for joint friendly gardening. Look for options labeled “ergonomic” or “joint-friendly.” Here are a few options to considering adding to your gardening arsenal.
Long Reach Tools
Choose trowels, cultivators, hoes and forks with extendable handles. This will reduce the amount of bending and reaching, making it easier on your joints.
If you cannot find tools with grips on the handles, try adding foam or grip tape to the end so you can more easily hold the tool.
Instead of lugging a heavy water can, opt for a lightweight garden hose. Be sure to get one that stretches at least 50 feet.
Not every garden has to be on the ground. Consider window or fence gardens. You could even do container or raised gardening. These methods will allow less bending, making it easier for your joints.
Roll With It
Instead of sitting on your knees, invest in a rolling stool. This will allow you to move around your garden while sitting, which reduces the pressure on your knees and the need to bend. You can even choose garden carts that have places to store your garden tools.
Always Stretch Before
We know you aren’t working out, but stretching beforehand can help prevent pain. Stretch the muscles in your arms, back, legs and hips. And don’t stop at stretching. Take breaks during your gardening routine. You don’t have to get everything done at one time, and breaks could help prevent pain later on.
See a Doctor
If your back or joint pain is keeping you from doing the things you love, it might be time to see a doctor. At Back Pain Centers of America (BPC), we understand how much you value your active lifestyle. Our board-certified surgeons and specialists are well-versed in the latest minimally invasive treatments for a wide range of conditions. Call us today at [sc name=”patient_phone_number_dash”] to take the next step and begin walking the road to recovery!
Did you know?
over 87 million people suffer
from back pain