Part 7: Maintain a Stable Base of Support

The following are lifting principles to encourage safe lifting mechanics:

Part 7: Maintain a Stable Base of Support

When lifting, position the legs shoulders-width apart to maintain a stable base of support. When lifting to higher levels stagger legs front to back and transfer weight from rear to front leg. Attempt to keep both feet firmly on the floor to further enhance stability. When lowering the weight to the floor ensure that elbows are straight to avoid crouching too low (knees at less than a 90° angle). Arising from this position places increased stress upon the knees, does not allow for optimal muscle use and is a less stable starting position.

Lifting should be a smooth, continuous movement as jerking movements place greater stress upon the spine. Initially learning to use correct body mechanics is like learning a new sport. The positions and movements will feel awkward at first, but with practice they will become more comfortable and familiar. Correct body mechanics should not take any longer to perform than poor body mechanics and therefore should not affect production

This ergo-tip is a part of an ergo-tip series about safe lifting mechanics. This ergo-tip concludes the Safe Lifting Mechanics Series. Please visit the table of contents at http://www.ergo-motion.com/category/ergo-tips/ to view previous and other available posts.