Gardening is believed to be healthy. You are in the fresh air, have a lot of exercises, and the beauty of nature is good for the mind. Far from it, gardening can also involve health risks.
The most common cut injuries are likely to occur when working in the garden. Wherever pruning shears, knives, and the like are handled, a little inattentiveness or a slip is enough, and it happens.
Falls from ladders are not uncommon; ailing ladders or ladders that are too short are used again and again. Sometimes the ladder is just not secure enough.
Gardening puts a lot of strain on the back. This repeatedly leads to impairments up to and including herniated discs.
You should avoid a stooped position and always use lifting and carrying aids. Anyone who has circulatory problems notices this massively when bending over in beds, and this can sometimes go black.
Electric garden tools are also a major hazard. Accidents due to carelessness occur time and again. After the winter break, they should definitely be checked for their safety.
Protective measures should also be observed when working with the devices. For example, when chopping, it is essential to wear protective goggles so that no wood particles that are thrown out can injure the eyes.
Protective clothing and/or protective gloves should be worn during certain work. Sturdy shoes are also an advantage for certain types of work.
Anyone who handles chemicals in the garden, for example, weed killers, can suffer breathing difficulties, skin irritation, or the like if they have an allergic reaction or do not observe certain precautionary measures. If their use cannot be avoided, then you have to follow the instructions.
But even plants or insect bites can cause allergic reactions to occur.
Tick bites represent another health risk. They can transmit dreaded meningitis or borreliosis.
If you work in the garden in summer, you should drink enough and also pay attention to sun protection.
Especially in midsummer, you shouldn’t work too long in the blazing sun, and you should definitely wear a sun hat or cap.
Gardening should be for relaxation and enjoyment and not degenerate into stress. It is not good for your health either. Even when there is a lot going on, it is important to take regular breaks.
Work in a gentle posture
A large percentage of gardening is done on the ground. Frequent bending over is inevitable, and after a while, the back is stressed and begins to hurt. This is often the case, especially during the planting and harvesting period.
Take care of your back by getting used to “correct stooping.” Orthopedically correct stooping is done by bending the knees. This may seem a bit cumbersome in the initial phase, but it is immensely gentle on the back and the sensitive vertebrae and intervertebral discs. The stability in the squatting position is also much greater, and therefore the risk of injury when working with garden tools is lower. Say goodbye to holding back with your legs straight.
More tips to protect your back
Spending one or more hours in the garden can be compared to a sports program. Here as there should be started with some warm-up exercises. The warm-up loosens the muscles and some targeted stretching exercises protect against sore muscles, tension, and strains.
The garden clothes must be adapted to the weather and temperature. The sweaty and insufficiently covered back cools down quickly.
This leads to painful tension and even strains.
Any stooping should be avoided as far as possible. The aim must be to do most of the gardening while standing. Devices with a correspondingly long handle or curved tools are helpful.
If you have to work on the floor, crouch with your upper body upright. Leaning forward strains the back, both when standing and kneeling.
The stay in the garden must be varied, comparable to a changing fitness program. This loosens the muscles as well as the entire back.
It shouldn’t “stiffen.” Unilateral loads must be avoided both temporarily and permanently.
Jerky movements are a no-go. The overall sequence of movements must be fluid.
All garden tools should be extendable with a telescopic rod. That is already decided when purchasing the device.
Only one or a maximum of two telescopic rods are required for all devices from one manufacturer. They can be screwed on and unscrewed, i.e., exchanged as required.
Flower pots or flower tubs should be placed on mobile trolleys right from the start. On the one hand, they stand about ten centimeters above the ground; on the other hand, this prevents these real heavyweights from being lifted in spring and autumn. The transport is easy and physically not strenuous with the taxi.
The establishment of raised beds almost wholly supports the back. The height of the beds is decided individually. There is no need to bend down to the ground without replacement.
Outside the gardening season, hobby gardeners should keep themselves physically fit. Just as outdoor athletes complete their winter program, hobby gardeners can choose from swimming, running, or jogging as a fitness program.
When buying garden soil, fertilizer, and the like, smaller packaging units should be selected. The associated additional costs save strenuous and painful carrying and lugging, which cannot be easy on the back.
Make sure you wear the right clothing
Gardening makes it easy to work up a sweat. This may not be a problem in summer, but there is often still a cool wind blowing in spring or autumn. So make sure you choose the right clothes.
It is best to put on several layers on top of each other so that you can take them off as needed without being too lightly dressed. Drafts on damp skin can cause not only colds but also cause tension and muscle spasms.
Tips for allergy sufferers
Gardening can be a torment for those who are allergic to all kinds of pollen. Anyone who is affected by hay fever should first and foremost ensure that the plants that tend to produce pollen and sometimes lead to serious problems such as asthma attacks in those affected should be exchanged for varieties that are also considered safe for allergy sufferers.
Among the plants that can cause respiratory distress include:
- Sun hat
- Poppies and
Straw for the winter should be avoided, and jute sheathing should be used instead. Protective masks and goggles should be worn during work that involves raising dust. The number of allergens in the air you breathe can also be reduced by frequent watering.