On a recent visit to the grocery store I saw a mother lifting her young child from the car seat—specifically the middle, back seat.
My back ached just watching her bend, twist and lift all while being in a compromised position.
Here is a useful tip to help prevent a back injury while lifting your child from their car seat:
If your child is old enough to help, invite your child to participate. Lifting a 2, 3, 4 year old child from the center back seat without the child’s participation calls for the parent to reach while lifting, which is unsafe even with relatively light weight involved. Try this next time. When taking the child out of the car, step into the car with one leg, lean your body towards your child and ask him/her to reach and hold onto your neck. Having the child reach towards you allows you to keep your back straight, your arms close to your body and with your child initiating the motion this helps decrease the amount of force you need to exert to lift your child. Keep your head up, arms close to your body and never twist.
An added tip that is very beneficial particularly if you have driven for any length of time: always do a quick back extension when you get out of the car before attempting to lift anything or anyone. This helps to prepare your body for exertion and feels really good!
Coming soon…suggestions about children’s backpacks!
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