Spring is here, and that means getting outside and enjoying the warmer weather.  Of course, it also means yard work.  While not everyone enjoys it, it’s something that’s got to be done. As a result, tens of millions of Americans roll up their sleeves and get to work.

Even if you enjoy yard work,  it opens the door to the possibility of minor injury or a serious injury.  Some of the more common outdoor injuries include things like:

  • Slips and falls
  • Strains and sprains
  • Insect bites
  • Burns, especially when you touch hot lawn equipment like lawn mowers
  • Cuts

This last category tends to be the most serious, and includes cuts received from a variety of equipment including trimmers, lawn mowers, garden shears, chainsaws, and the like.  Falls are typically the second most serious category, especially if you have the misfortune of falling off a ladder.

The good news, however, is that most of these accidents and injuries are easy to avoid.  The twin keys to doing so are mindfulness and proper gear.

Mindfulness is simply being more aware of what you’re doing and how you’re doing it.  Be sure you’re using proper bending, squatting and lifting techniques. Whenever you use any piece of equipment, ensure you’re using it in the proper manner.

In terms of gear, properly outfitting yourself will go a long way toward minimizing your risk of injury, especially when combined with increased mindfulness.  Among other things, any time you’re doing yard work, be sure you’re wearing:

  • Closed-toe shoes with slip resistant soles
  • Long pants
  • Gloves

Depending on what kind of work you’re doing, protective goggles may be a good idea too, but for many of the lawn-related chores you’re likely to do, it’s probably overkill.  Use your best judgement on that front.  Just be careful, be mindful and stay safe!