Again we begin by organising our standing so that we are lengthened and poised (see standing blog).
Digging, like lifting, requires bending at ankles, knees and hips while keeping our lengthened head, neck, back organisation (see photograph below left). This makes the process of digging less strenuous. Compare this with the photograph on the right where although the knees are bent, I am bending forwards and down by bending the back and also tensing my neck as I need more effort to push the spade into the ground. This is potentially hazardous to my neck, and back.
It is important to keep the length we have achieved by standing with good poise as we move into doing other tasks in the garden.
Lifting: When lifting, we need to bend at the hips, knees and ankles but keep the head, neck, back relationship as it was when standing (see photograph to right). This organisation allows us to use the support from the ground through our feet (see standing blog) and consequently through our backs to aid the lifting process.
If we do not organise ourselves well when lifting we can cause excessive strain on necks, shoulders and back. Not bending sufficiently at the ankles, knees and hips has lead to bending and strain in the shoulders and upper and lower back in the photograph below.