Secondly, next Wednesday is February 1. February is American Heart Month. American Heart Month promotes heart health. One way to keep your heart healthy is to exercise. Snow shoveling is a form of exercise. It requires movement and energy. Therefore, snow shoveling promotes heart health...but only when done correctly. Below are some helpful facts and tips to safely, and correctly, shovel snow.
Cold weather increases heart rate and blood pressure. If you haven't exercised in a while, and launch into shoveling snow, it can put added pressure on your heart. To prevent this, tips as quoted from the National Safety Council:
- "Do not shovel after eating or while smoking
- Take it slow and stretch out before you begin
- Shovel only fresh, powdery snow; it's lighter
- Push the snow rather than lifting it
- If you do lift it, use a small shovel or only partially fill the shovel
- Lift with your legs, not your back
- Do not work to the point of exhaustion"
- If the blower jams, turn it off
- Keep your hands away from the moving parts
- Do not drink alcohol and use the snow blower
- Be aware of the carbon monoxide risk of running a snow blower in an enclosed space
- Refuel your snow blower when it is off, never when it is running