Below is a list of the dangers of snow shoveling:

  • Risk of heart attack, especially those prone to it
  • Hypothermia
  • Strain on the body, particularly the back.

To help avoid these dangers, people should:

  • Strengthen and condition their (back) muscles.
  • Consult their doctors before shoveling, especially if they are not active and have had heart problems. Also, they should keep away from caffeine or nicotine before the task, which boosts heart rates and narrows blood vessels.
  • Drink lots of water and don several layers of clothing, removing them as needed.
  • Reduce body strain by choosing a shovel with a smaller blade, since it picks up less amount of snow.
  • Lift with your legs by bending knees and keeping your back “as straight as possible.”
  • Never bend at the waist. Step in the direction you’re throwing the shovelful of snow.
  • Hold the shovel with both hands at a considerable distance to get more leverage and make lifting easier.