So, you’ve rented the truck, and you’ve gathered the troops. You’re almost ready to move. You just need to get everything into the truck. But no matter what you’re moving, it’s important to stay healthy and use the right techniques as you lift, carry, and move your possessions.
Below, we’ll discuss six tips for lifting and carrying your belongings during a move.
- Pack Properly
When boxing up your belongings, you’ll want to ensure there aren’t any loose items in the box, even if they aren’t fragile, and you’ll want to make sure the box has a balanced weight. Loose items or an unbalanced weight can easily tip the box in your hands and cause an accident or injury.
If you feel like the box’s weight is unstable or the items inside shift dangerously, rearrange the belongings inside the box.
- Check the Weight
Before you lift a box or a piece of furniture, be sure to test the weight. Push the object a bit with your feet or hands to check how heavy it is so you can properly prepare for the lift and move. If you lift something that’s heavier than you expected, you can pull a muscle or sustain some other injury.
If you’re unsure if you can handle the weight, ask a friend or family member for a little help. Team lifting is a great way to avoid injury. But if you aren’t sure you can handle even a portion of the load, allow others to move the item in your stead.
- Ensure You Can Easily Latch On
Make sure you have a good hold on the box or piece of furniture before you lift. A slip of the hand or a struggle to grip an item can cause an injury or an accident. Wear gloves, or cut handles in your cardboard boxes for an easier hold. If you feel your grip slipping or you’re struggling to hold on, put the item down immediately instead of plowing on. Readjust your grip before resuming.
- Move Within Reach of Your Possessions
It’s best not to reach out and extend your arms for a box or other item. Pull the item close to you before lifting with your legs, and if you’re lifting something higher than your head, use a ladder instead to avoid raising a heavy box above your shoulders. Keeping an item closer to your body as you lift and carry will cut the risk of injury, especially during team lifts.
- Prepare for the Lift
Before you move your belongings, make sure you stretch as if you’re preparing for a workout. Leave enough room around the object you’re lifting so you don’t have to adjust to a cramped area and subsequently injure yourself.
Also, ensure there aren’t any obstacles underfoot in high traffic areas. Slippery flooring or tripping hazards can put you and your helpers’ health at risk. And be sure your team is adequate for the job. You want some heavy lifters on hand for the more difficult jobs; allowing people to carry heavier loads than they can handle can be risky.
- Lift and Carry Carefully
Take it slow. Don’t haul up a box in a quick, jerky movement, and don’t move too quickly as you carry your belongings. Going too fast can pull and strain muscles, so even if you want to get the moving process over with, don’t rush it. Also, when lifting a box, crouch down and lift with your legs. Otherwise, you can hurt your arms or hands.
Keep your back straight, and face the box to avoid twisting your body. Any kind of twisting or bending of your back can easily result in injury, even if a box isn’t normally too heavy for you. Also, it’s a good idea to keep your load between your waist and shoulders when you’re carrying. Raising or lowering a load too much can put a lot of strain on your back muscles.
If you’re carrying things over your shoulder, such as a rolled-up rug or box, stand up straight to avoid straining your back and shoulders, and take care that the weight is evenly distributed to avoid tipping or unbalance.
Stay hydrated as you work to avoid other health concerns, and take breaks regularly to avoid overstraining yourself. Remember not to take any chances, and pay attention to your own exhaustion and muscle fatigue. Small, lighter packages can cause as much damage over time as one improperly handled heavy box. Don’t be afraid to ask for help or pause for a while.
Moving can be rough, but it’s important to do it right. Use the tips above to keep you and your helping hands healthy and uninjured as you move. When you need to rent a truck or van for your relocation, trust in Elite Truck Rental. We can provide quality truck and van rentals for any of your needs.