By Renee Ebert
SPECIAL TO HOMES PLUS
WAUKESHA Spring and all its excite-
ment is here. Gardening is such a
rewarding part of it all! Shortly, we will
be busy digging in the dirt, hoeing and
weeding, planting and seeding. With all
that fun work ahead, why not make it a
Multi-tasking is the name of the game,
so shape up or get out in the garden, that
We may not realize it, but gardening
can burn up to 400 calories per hour,
which is almost as many burned as in an
aerobics class. Gardening builds many
major and minor muscle groups and may
lower the risk of heart disease. It can
increase overall strength, reduce stress,
lower your blood pressure and even help
keep your cholesterol levels in check.
The latest studies have shown to stretch
after a workout. However, doing a slow
warm-up before gardening is always a
good idea, as well. Consider going on a
short walk around your garden area not
only as a brief warm-up but also as a
chance to assess your outlying project for
Soil prep, raking, weeding and planting
require much bending. To prevent from
bending over too far, keep the handle of
the rake, hoe or shovel close to your body
and plant your feet comfortably apart.
This will help keep your core more
upright to prevent lower back and shoul-
der pain from setting in.
If you are using a long-handled shovel
for sometime, digging properly and bend-
ing as you are sitting in a bucket can
take the place of leg squats and work
your glutes, as well. It wont hurt that
your biceps are going to get toned up in
the process, either.
Here are some more helpful tips:
Work your oblique abdominal mus-
cles when raking or digging. Pay special
attention to the twisting motion you are
using to better target the entire oblique
area. Dont forget to switch your tool to
your right and left sides in order to work
each side equally.
Prevent gripping your garden tools
too tightly to avoid getting stiff joints.
Change hand positions several times to
work a variety of muscles in your fingers
and help strengthen your wrists.
Protect your knees by using a kneel-
ing pad or wearing kneepads. To better
your flexibility, switch the directions that
your hips are leaning toward and try sit-
ting in different positions.
Take a break if you have been in one
position too long.Walk and stretch!
Always drink enough water and wear
Stretch out all muscles worked when
done for the day.
Remember that after all that hard work,
your garden isnt the only one looking
(Renee Ebert is a childrens events and
speaker coordinator with Eberts Green-
house Village in Ixonia.)
1803 47th Avenue
Kenosha, WI 53144
W150 N7218 Paseo Lane
Menomonee Falls, WI 53051
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By Jesse Ziemienski
Board Certified Master Arborist WI-0145B
AMERICAN TREE EXPERTS, INC.
Mowers & Trimmers
Vs. Your Trees
The Good News: Mowers and
trimmers save hours of labor and
leave the lawn looking beautiful.
The Bad News: Mowers and trimmers
can permanently damage your trees.
Many homeowners and landscapers
think that trees are protected by their
bark. The repeated assault on trees from
mowers and trimmers on even mature
trees will stress and possibly kill them.
The best solution is to remove turf grass
and apply a layer of mulch 4 - 6 deep. If
mulching is not practical, care must be
taken when using mowers and trimmers
around trees and tree roots.
A few moments of hand
clipping can keep grass and
weeds at bay while protecting
your trees at the same time.
Warm up before doing gardening
a good idea