National Gardening Exercise Day is here, and we are bringing you some top tips for how to make gardening a pain-free and enjoyable hobby! While trying to make the most out of the extra time at home this year, many of us have a renewed focus on gardening and yardwork. Gardening is beneficial for both the mind and body, and we can’t think of a better time to get started. Continue reading to learn more!
Although gardening can be a great form of exercise, the repetitive motions and positioning of your body can lead to swelling, joint pain, and inflammation if you suffer from arthritis.
Here are 5 tips to help make gardening an enjoyable experience for you:
- Limit time spent on tasks: Rather than spending hours on one task like weeding or digging, set a timer so that you only spend 20- 30 minutes on that one area. Take a few minutes to get up and stretch before starting on the next task.
- Stay hydrated: Keep a water bottle nearby and continue to stay hydrated throughout the day. Drinking sufficient amounts of water will help prevent muscle fatigue and dehydration, especially while spending extended time outdoors in the heat and sun. Drinking water also flushes toxins from the body which can help fight inflammation.
- Gardening Tools: Select gardening tools with rubberized handles. This makes gripping and using them much easier on your hands. You can also find larger grips that slide over existing handles. Here are some examples of ergonomic gardening tools with easy-grip handles.
- Use Raised Beds: Raised beds are easier on your body and posture. You can sit, rather than kneel to tend them, and some are high enough to garden at hip height. This saves pain in the back and knees. Here are some options for raised beds or planter boxes.
- Know when to hit pause: The work will always be there tomorrow. It’s easy to get carried away and want to work “just 30 more minutes”. Your body will thank you for knowing when to stop. By stopping before you’re in pain, you’ll be able to head back out the next day and resume your projects in a more enjoyable way.
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