It’s here! It’s here! Whether you call it Snowmaggedon 2016, Snowzilla or even the Jonas Brothers Blizzard, it’s here! And that means plenty of shoveling over the next few days.

So how do you make sure you stay strong and don’t hurt yourself shoveling (you may laugh but there are over 11,000 who hurt themselves each year shoveling snow)? Here are a few tips.

Start by warming up – Think about the movements you’ll make while shoveling and then use dynamic moves that mimic these movements. Don’t use static stretching. Save that for after the shoveling.

  • Torso rotations with toe taps
  • Squats
  • Lunges
  • Hamstring kicks
  • Torso circles
  • Bicep movements
  • Overhead presses with knee lifts
  • Arm circles with step touch
  • Slow butt kickers
  • Dead lift movement

During the shoveling remember to use your quads to lift and throw with. Keep your knees slightly bent and tighten your core. This will protect your back.

Once you’re done shoveling, take some time to do some static stretching. Hold your stretches for at least 15 – 30 seconds.

Stretch the following:

  • Hamstrings
  • Quadriceps
  • Calves
  • Cross Leg Gluteal
  • Lying Torso Rotation
  • Tricep
  • Bicep
  • Chest
  • Abs
  • Cat and Camel

Once you’re done stretching, take a nice warm Epsom salt bath. It will warm you up and soothe any aching muscles.