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Yard Work Prep 🌷

Hey, it’s Jennifer. Today I want to talk about what, in my opinion, is the toughest thing you can do with your body. And that is a marathon day of yard work. How can you get your body ready for it?

So with yard working and gardening, you’re doing lots of repetitive bending over. You’re doing lots of pulling. The thing that I think makes it tricky is, a lot of times when we’re working out, we just move in one plane. But that’s not always the case out in the real world, out in the yard outside.

A lot of times, you know, maybe you’ve got a twist going on. Or the ground is a little bit uneven. So we can’t just practice in one plane of motion. So I’ve got two exercises that can help prepare the body for getting outside and getting our hands dirty.

One, is taking your normal kettlebell or dumbbell deadlift, and adding multiple directions to it. So going to the outside of one foot.  Going to the center is still good practice for mechanics to get that nice flat back hinge. Then going to the other side of your other foot. And just practicing with a little bit of twist in your back. You’d rather practice that motion and strengthen it in a controlled setting. You want to be ready for doing that while you’re out in the yard, rather than springing it on your body with no preparation.

The other motion that happens a lot with yard work like a pulling motion if you’re pulling weeds or something. A row is great for that. But you’re not always right on top of the weed or your hands that you’re pulling with. Sometimes you’re  reaching and pulling. Sometimes you’re pulling across. So something you can add to a normal row is picking up that weight and having to, move it around.

One exercise that I like to tweak just a little bit is a normal either quadrupeds (hands and knees) row. Work on just tapping your weight in different directions. Or you can take that into plank position. Do a row, but then try to put the weight down in different places. That’s tough, so you can take it to your knees if that feels like too much to start.

So those are two exercises that I recommend doing two to three times a week. Ideally, a month before you know that you’re going to hit the yard or garden pretty hard. You’ll feel a lot better for having done that prep work instead of just going out there fresh. Let us know how it goes for you, and good luck this spring. Thanks!

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Here at Peak Endurance Performance & Physical Therapy we help active adults in the Madison Area get back to the activities they love without pain or limitations. We see people of all ages, ability levels, and individuals trying to get back to a multitude of movements including: getting back into running, women postpartum, CrossFit athletes, climbers, gymnasts, wrestlers, overhead athletes, and your recreational weekend warrior. If you’re looking to get back to the activities that give you meaning, relieve stress, and make you feel like you again, feel free to reach out below and we’ll see if we’re the right fit for you.