Tuesday, February 15, 2011

An Aching Farmer's Best Friend

Winter chores are pretty hard on an middle-aged, decrepit farmer's back, shoulders, elbows and wrists.  Twice a day I carry four 5-gallon buckets of water and a bale of hay. Every day I shovel manure.  Every week I haul  about  ten 50-pound  sacks of feed. Every two weeks I clean out the chicken coop.  Every month I unload a truckload  of hay and straw and stack it in the barn. Plus there is plenty of snow shoveling. Not to mention, too much time sitting at the darn computer - sitting is the worst.  My Back Buddy has been getting a good workout lately.

This  "Back Buddy,"a simple, plastic, knobby "S," has served me well for many years.  My friend John, a yoga instructor and trigger point massage therapist, advised me to get one years ago when my back was  in excruciating pain and I couldn't stand up straight. He showed me how to use it to smooth out knotty clenched up muscles, and ever since I have used it to relieve pain in my lower back, shoulders, neck, and even the bottoms of my feet.

After my chores, the trapezius muscle is a recurring pain. The curve of the  Back Buddy hooks over your shoulder and when you find the source of the clenched up muscle, you apply pressure and smooth it out. The knobs on the inside curves enable you to work on your neck, calves, feet. etc.

It's not the total solution.  A  jacuzzi or a weekly massage would be nice -- but this tool is  effective,  inexpensive and immediate.


Michaele said...

Wow - At first I thought it was something you used to help carry stuff. haha Great idea!

sanderfam said...

Susan--my co-worker John, from Barnes & Noble, said he mentioned me to you. I can't find your email...would you be willing to post it here. Thanks much. Renae Sander

gz said...

I could do with one of those right now!

Susan said...

GZ- Yes, I bet you sure could use a Back Buddy after a long day wedging clay, throwing pots, loading kilns and hauling ceramics to market!!

Renae - You can contact me at: skwaughtal at aol.com
I am eager to hear about your upcoming farming adventure!

Dawn Sanborn said...

Kristi had one of these! they are awesome!

Just remember - all those chores = exercise! and exercise at home = no gym dues! see your saving money already!

Mama Pea said...

Why in the world do you call yourself "middle aged?" You look like you're in your mid-thirties!

Susan said...

Thanks, Mama Pea--but I am 53!! Past the halfway mark to 100.