Depending on the kind of person you are, winter is either the best time of the year or the season for hibernating and only going outside when you absolutely have to. Regardless of whether you love or hate it, it’s no secret that winter weather brings with it increased risk for injuries, with the cold and the ice and all. Luckily, we’ve compiled a list of seven helpful winter chiropractic tips to help you keep your body in good condition and avoid injury, no matter if you’re a winter sports fanatic or if you only venture outdoors to go to work and the store and the like.
#1. Stretch Daily
Stretching is often something people just associate with athletes and dancers and very few people stretch on their own. However, stretching is one of the best winter chiropractic tips we can give you because of how everyone can benefit from it. You don’t need to be able to touch your toes or do a split, but simple stretches like child’s pose and downward dog and calf stretches and the like will boost your body’s mobility and flexibility.
When your muscles and joints are stiff, this increases the likelihood of injury, especially when it’s icy or when the cold makes you even stiffer. Regular stretching will loosen your muscles and joints, which is especially important in cold winter weather.
#2. Warm Yourself Up Before Activities
A common mistake people make is trying to jump right into activities like shoveling snow before taking the necessary precautions to warm their bodies up. This is a crucial winter chiropractic tip, regardless of whether you’re a skiing enthusiast or if you just need to shovel your driveway. Warming your body up with stretches and exercises like jumping jacks and squats and a brisk walk will reduce your risk of injury. While this is more commonly known among athletes, if you aren’t sporty, it’s still vital for you to warm yourself up before doing any sort of winter activity!
One of the most common reasons we see new patients during the winter months is due to back pain and other such issues that result from shoveling snow, slipping and falling, and more. While warming up before doing any outdoor activity won’t guarantee that you won’t get hurt, it will make it less likely, which is why this is one of the most frequent winter chiropractic tips chiropractors will give.
#3. Maintain An Exercise Routine
We get it – it’s cold outside, if you try to do anything outdoors, there’s this entire process of bundling up, and if you drive to the gym, you’re risking potentially icy roads and decreased visibility due to snowfall. In spite of this, it’s important to find some way to stay active, for the health benefits and to reduce your risk of injury. You don’t need to log intense cardio workouts or do heavy weights or anything unless you want to. Even taking a walk around the block or going up and down the stairs in your home are a great way to keep active during the cold winter months.
#4. Don’t Spend Too Much Time Hunched Over
People are more likely to be on their phones when they’re spending more time indoors, so for one of our winter chiropractic tips, we recommend trying to limit your screen time, or to be mindful of your posture while you’re on your phone. Many people hunch over and don’t really think about their posture when they’re clicking through social media, but poor posture can result in neck pain, shoulder pain, back pain, and more. Try to remember to sit up straight with your shoulders aligned with your hips and not to constantly have your neck bent over your device.
#5. Ensure You Have The Right Outerwear
A common reason why people slip and fall is because they’re walking in the snow or on ice without the proper footwear. You want to ensure that you have shoes with grippy soles and good traction in order to keep you more stable. It’s not just improper footwear that can cause problems, which is why one of our winter chiropractic tips is to have the right outerwear, which yes, includes your footwear, but also extends to warm sweaters and coats and bottoms and the like. The colder you are, the stiffer you are, which puts you at higher risk of injury.
#6. Be Mindful Of Your Diet
It’s so much easier to stray away from healthy eating in the winter months, with all the holiday treats and the snacks while you’re bored inside and opting for hot chocolate instead of water in order to stay warm. While treats and snacks and hot chocolate are all wonderful in moderation, too much of anything isn’t good for you. While this may not be a winter chiropractic tip you’d expect, chiropractors know how your diet impacts your health and your body’s ability to protect itself and stay in good condition. Indulge in treats, but be mindful of how much you do, and make sure you’re still eating well and staying hydrated with water.
#7. Schedule Regular Chiropractic Visits
By seeing a chiropractor regularly, you’ll set yourself up for success this winter by keeping your body in better condition and through having someone who can help keep your body in alignment and treat pain and other issues that may flare up. We know, we know, you expected this from winter chiropractic tips, but we recommend it because it’s proven to help and will indeed make getting through the winter months safer and easier on your body.
Elevate Wellness offers top notch chiropractic services. With our expertly trained professionals, you can rest assured that you’ll be receiving excellent treatment that is personalized to you and your needs. For more winter chiropractic tips or to set up an appointment, don’t hesitate to contact us today!