Back in the Garden
My husband doesn't care for rhododendrons. At this point he will probably tell you he hates them.... let me explain. Several years ago we were doing, as most of you are either currently doing or will be doing soon, and that is readying the yard for the summer. When it came time to clean up the bed around our rhododendron, he reported that he really didn't like this "weed"! Yes, I know it's not a weed; pretty flowers in the spring, the rest of the year not so much. So he asked if he could just take it out, and reluctantly I said ‘yes'. I then asked if he wanted me to get a shovel, "No I don't need it" was his response. So, in what I consider extremely bad Chiropractic form he bent over at the waist and grabbed the rhododendron by the base and pulled. Need I say more? Well, I can report that he did pull something, but it was not the rhododendron. This is the time of year when I see a rise in low back injuries, mainly due to yard work. No sane person wants a beautiful lawn where the price is his or her health. I know there are those die-hards, but for the rest, here are some suggestions to help lessen the chance of injury. While it might be obvious, do not follow my husbands' example. When you are pulling weeds, or a shrub out, having the right tool is a great advantage. It is best to be as close as possible to the offensive weed or shrub you are trying to remove. So being on your knees, or sitting on a small stool or bench is a safer position for your low back. If the bush or weed is much larger, again find the right tool, which might be a shovel, pick or trowel and let the tool do the work with a little leverage from you. Most of us want our yard or garden to be completely free of weeds, so we keep pushing on ignoring the warning signs telling us that our body is reaching its limit. Respect your body, it will tell you when enough is enough. And you know what? The weeds will still be there the next day, and more than likely you will find that new ones have joined them. Happy Gardening!
Contributor: Dr. Donna H. Rodriguez, DC