August – Tradies National Health Month
August is Tradies National Health Month, and the Australian Physiotherapy Association (APA) is raising awareness of the risks posed to those who work in trade occupations.
Why is tradies’ health so important?
Physically demanding trade jobs can cause and exacerbate a range of injures. It’s not surprising that tradies are overrepresented in workplace statistics compared to other workers. The average time off work due to serious workplace injury is 5-6 weeks, which is time many tradies simply can’t afford.
How to look after yourself at work
Given the physical nature of a tradie’s work, it’s important that you go home safe, well and ready for action again the next day. To help you do this, follow a few simple steps:
- Warm up each morning before you start work with some targeted stretches.
- Pace your workload throughout the day to avoid issues related to overuse and fatigue.
- Communicate with workmates to ensure you are working in an efficient and safe manner.
- Be willing to speak up if you feel uneasy about the level of risk you are exposed to at work.
- Don’t put yourself at risk of injury by rushing.
- Be willing to say ‘no’ when required to ensure both your own safety and that of others.
- Manage injuries immediately with the RICE method (rest, ice, compression, and elevation).
How can you help?
Anyone can get behind Tradies National Health Month. Everyone can spread the message—whether it’s your dad or mum, your partner, your employee or your mate, we all know a tradie and want them to place importance on their wellbeing.