The everyday American moves up to 12 times throughout their life. But no matter how many times you have moved, moving day often brings out the chaotic side of us. That is why it’s important to ensure that no one goes crazy when it comes to lifting furniture out of your self storage unit or moving truck. It’s all too easy to let your Uncle Steve convince you that he can “totally carry the futon.” Don’t believe him.
Creating a one-man team when lifting any kind of heavy furniture (whether it’s in or out of self storage units) is a recipe for disaster. Also, spinal injuries. So to keep you, your friends, and your family safe during your next big move, follow these safety tips to lifting your heavy furniture in order to keep everyone’s discs from slipping.
Have a game plan
Moving requires a lot of planning. That shouldn’t stop once everything is packed up into a self storage unit and your furniture is ready to roll out. Be sure to plan ahead of time who is lifting what and where it is you plan on moving it. Is your furniture going to the new house? Into a moving truck rental? Into public storage? Know ahead of time what to do with your furniture. That way everyone will have a heavy-lifting buddy to keep them from getting too adventurous.
Additionally, have your clothes set out the day before the big move so you’re not likely to slide on a pair of flip flops. Clothes that work best for couch lifting include:
- Jeans or leggings
- Non-loose shirts
Loose-fitted clothing can easily snag on door handles or sharp corners, which can cause you to slip, trip, or fall. Likewise, flip-flops are death traps when you’re not on the beach. The last story you want to have behind a broken ankle is that you tripped in a flip-flop. Be well-prepared for heavy lifting and set aside your clothes and footwear the night before.
Have the proper form
Having someone to help you lift heavy furniture doesn’t really help your back if neither of you knows how to lift with proper form. “Lift with your legs” is a common expression. It’s because when you lift something heavy without thinking, the stress you put on your spine can be too great and may cause your discs to pinch your nerve endings. This is also known as a slipped disc, and it can be incredibly painful.
Before you lift, widen your legs a little and tense the muscles in your thighs and calves. Then, lift the heavy furniture using those muscles. This allows your back muscles to be used as a secondary source of strength, which puts less pressure on your spinal cord.
Moving heavy furniture can be dangerous when you’re not prepared for it. Before a big move, always have a strategy involving multiple people, the right clothes, and the proper form. That way, when you put furniture in or out of your secure storage facility you won’t really break a leg.