Digging Out

Picking the right shovel can make your job easier.

The first significant snow fall of the season had people out all over the area.

From road crews keeping the roads clear, kids sledding down the hills in the park or shoveling out driveways early Saturday morning.

Just a quick look at South Park in Quincy Saturday afternoon and it's clear that people were enjoying themselves in this first real blast of snowy weather for the season. But for some people before all the fun ... came the work.

What you may not know is that kind of shovel you use can make a big difference to ease the job ahead of you.

Many people like James Rehfeldt started their morning shoveling snow from their driveways. But unlike some, James says that he looks forward to this every year.

"I love it," Rehfeldt said. "I do it every year, it's great exercise. I just love the snow and love shoveling."

But Danaesha Kelley says that you can get tired pretty quick when you're working so hard in these cold temperatures, so she just keeps her eyes on the finished product.

"It's hard work, but it's all worth it, I think," Kelley said. "We take breaks. But for the most part, we just keep going, keep pushing."

Joyce Frericks is a registered supervisor at Farm and Home Supply in Quincy.

She says that whether you are doing a small or a large area, it's important to use the right snow shovel.

"You want to try and get the ergonomical one," Frericks advised. "It is a little bit easier on your back. It doesn't matter what age you are, it's going to be easier on your back. Remember your backs aren't used to this heavy wet snow so this just takes a little bit of the pressure off of it."

Frericks says that traditional wood handled snow shovels should be used for pushing snow out of the way not scooping it up.

She also says it's important to pay attention to how deep the scoop is on the shovel you are buying.

"The deeper the scoop of course, the more weight that you're gonna have on it. So I would say, you know, it just depends on yourself. You know what you can handle and what you can't so just don't overdo it."

Joyce Frericks says there are some things to think about before purchasing a your shovel.

She advises people to think about the kind of shoveling they need to do.

Pick up the shovel and make sure it is light enough to start with before it gets the added weight from the snow.

And remember that wooded shovels will weigh more than plastic ones.