In our previous post, we discussed why it’s important to have a correct squatting position when lifting. But correct positioning is only one piece of the puzzle. Strengthening the power muscles and utilizing them with work activities can help your team avoid injury while lifting.
Stabilizing and Strengthening Your Core
When the TIPS team asks training participants what muscles are most important for lifting, most will say legs. Leg strength is a big part of the lifting picture, and most people rely on their quadricep muscles while lifting, though these muscles do not always pull evenly or have enough strength for the job.
But the true power muscles are in the hips and trunk and many people under-utilize these powerful muscles. The power muscles should be key players throughout the lifting movement but especially at the start of the movement as the trunk bends forward and again when the trunk starts to move back upright. Hip muscles, along with the big latissimus dorsi muscles, go a long way towards protecting the back and knees from overload and poor movement.
The deep abdominal muscles also play a critical role in the ability of the body to gain and hold correct position while lifting. These power muscles and their ability to function are critical for correct lifting technique and should be included in your safety program.
Incorporating Proper Lifting Technique at Work
If we can hold correct position and have strengthened the stabilizers and power muscles required for lifting, then we are ready to practice technique.
It is possible to train your team to lift correctly and move safely within the physical demands of their jobs. Just make sure you include the following components to assure you get the job done:
- Correct positioning and movement
- Core Stabilization
- Power Muscle Strength
- Correct Movement Technique
Do this and you and your team will not only lift better, you’ll feel better, even when you’re sitting in your lawn chair as you tailgate your way through the baseball finals and football season.
Sometimes, understanding and even practicing healthy lifting technique doesn’t lead to changed behavior and habits. People become ensnared in their faulty movement patterns and often stay within them even as they stretch and strengthen their power muscles. They miss out on all the benefits or worse increase their compensatory movement and muscle imbalance.
TiPS 3-Point Positioning and Movement System™ was designed exactly for this reason. We apply it to stretching, stabilization, strength and movement re-training so that each of your employees and your company’s safety engineers have a way to see and correct movement issues easily to get the best and safest results with all of their efforts. We also incorporate core stabilization right into our TIPS Active Stretching™ Program. Contact TiPS today to schedule your training.