Moving day means a lot of work, and – cue the Olivia Newton-John – it will get physical. While you’re planning the pack and gathering supplies, it’s important to take some time and learn how you can keep safe during the move. Your belongings, your back, your pets, heck, even your kids will thank you for it!
Keep Clear of Trip Hazards
Before you start moving day, it’s important to clear all the paths. Every single one. Don’t leave any small items that could cause a trip hazard on the floor. You won’t see anything with a big box blocking your view.
On moving day, clear out all pets and small children for everyone’s sake. Have someone take care of them while you’re moving; you won’t trip over them and injure yourself, or injure them under your foot. It’s a win-win.
It’s easy to get overeager and throw as much as possible into each box, but don’t make them too heavy. Because it’s hard to guess the weight of all your stuff, you should always pick up more boxes than you anticipate using!
Think about the integrity of the boxes, too. Cardboard is great because it’s light and durable while also being affordable, but it’s not the strongest thing out there. It can easily be broken or ruined by moisture. Wrap sharp objects like cutlery so that they don’t poke through boxes, and pack fragile items carefully so that they don’t break during the move. Consider even getting some plastic bins for these items, though that is a pricier option.
There’s no dress code when it comes to moving, but what you choose to wear will make your move a whole lot safer:
- No loose clothing. They can get caught on handles and rails when you’re already off balance.
- No open-toed shoes like sandals or flip-flops. You don’t want to drop the couch on your exposed feet!
- Moving can be a dirty job, so wear clothes you won’t mind getting dirty, sweaty, or possibly torn.
Safe moving often comes down to technique. Before starting, maybe do some stretches or jumping jacks to warm up the muscles and get them nice and limber. Now consider the task ahead and think about every action. Never lift without thinking about what you’re picking up, never try and lift on an uneven surface (even if you think you can), and never, ever lift more than you can handle. If you’re lifting with another person and you feel the grip loosening, communicate this.
There is proper form when it comes to moving. When lifting, always keep your shoulders back, your back straight, and your head forward. Try and let your legs do the work, bending your knees instead of your spine. The adage “lift with your legs, not with your back” is old, but it’s still true!
To avoid the traps of lifting, you could also call some professionals. Movers know how to keep their bodies safe; after all, they do it for a living! Just make sure boxes are labeled if they’re heavy!
Use The Right Tools
So you’ve got the mover’s “clean and jerk” down to a science and your back is feeling great. Awesome! Now think about what could make the whole day easier. Not everything needs to be done by hand. Rent furniture and/or utility dollies to move more boxes and larger items in fewer trips. Other supplies can be rented to keep your items secure in the truck: if you don’t want to use any of your own blankets, you can also pick up some specifically for made for moving; and straps are also necessary for keeping larger items in place while the truck is in motion.
One of the best tools? Movers! If you have a lot of boxes and furniture to move, and little time or physical energy to move them yourself, hiring a moving company is a great choice.