Appendix 5C - Good Practice in Manual Lifting

Some proper lifting practices are recommended below:

  • Get a firm footing. Make sure that the floor is not slippery. Spread the feet for a stable stance.

  • Size up the load. Determine how heavy it is. If the load is too large or too heavy for one person to carry, ask somebody to help or employ a suitable lifting device.

  • Get a firm grip. Use handles, gripping or other lifting tools that will help.

  • Make sure the load is free, not locked down or stuck.

  • Keep the back straight. Keeping the chin tucked in will help keep the back straight.

  • Lift the load with the legs, and NEVER with the back.

  • Tighten the stomach muscles when lifting.

  • Lift the load slowly. Do not jerk.

  • Position the load close to the body before and during lifting and lowering.

  • Watch out for the fingers and hands when carrying a load so that they will not be struck against other objects.

  • Do not twist during lifting. Turn with the feet, not with the back.

  • Set the load down gently. Use the legs. Keep the back straight.

Team Lifting

To enable load sharing, lifting partners should be of similar height and build and should be trained together. There should be a person nominated as team leader to co-ordinate the lift.