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Ergonomic Household Products That Will Save Your Back

Use these 10 ergonomic tools to get more done in your home, garage and garden, while avoiding the painful aggravation of a strained back.

Our editors and experts handpick every product we feature. We may earn a commission from your purchases.

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Anti-Fatigue Mat

If you spend long periods of time standing at a specific spot, such as at a workbench or standing desk, consider picking up an anti-fatigue mat to relieve stress and strain on your feet and back. Although the science is not conclusive on how much anti-fatigue mats reduce back strain, there is no doubt they make standing much more comfortable. That’s exactly why they’re mentioned in OSHA’s Intro to Ergonomics study guide.

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Mechanic’s Creeper

Crawling beneath the car is never fun, and it’s made only mildly more bearable if you use a mechanic’s creeper. But if you want to put as little strain on your back as possible, check out a creeper sculpted to fit your body’s contours. That allows you to keep your car tuned up without sacrificing your health.

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Adjustable Task Chair

A portable task chair lets you work on a project without standing or stooping. With an adjustable seat height ranging from 18-1/2 to 33 inches, it provides support for tasks like painting or staining, keeping you productive while reducing strain on your back.

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Floor Nailer

Flooring is notoriously rough on your back and knees. Quality floor nailers provide an ergonomic solution for this task. With extended handles and strike bumpers with a light trigger, you won’t need to swing your strike hammer like you’re trying to win a prize at the state fair.

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Standing Screw Gun

Just as an ergonomic floor nailer can make laying floors easier, a standing screw gun can eliminate stooping and sore backs during the installation of the sub floor or drywall. The screw gun’s long arm works on the same principle as a “helping hand” gripper, extending your reach and keeping your body’s core centered during installation.

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Yard Pickup Tool

Speaking of helping hands, this yard pickup tool makes collecting leaves and debris easier and safer by combining the functions of a toothed rake and scooper into a single tool. Particularly useful on leaves, it also works great on grass clippings, trash pickup and even pet waste.

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Wood Sling

It’s no secret that wood is heavy! If you have a wood-burning stove, fire pit or fireplace, then chances are you spend a fair amount of time hefting wood from your storage location. Using a wood sling distributes the load so that you can involve more muscles. That means less back strain and a more enjoyable time by the fire.

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Backpack Vacuum

Sometimes it seems like home ownership is a never-ending battle against dust and debris. Vacuuming is one of the household chores that can pose a surprising risk of back injury. The constant push-pull motion can quickly wear out your back muscles, and that’s not to mention the hassle of toting a standing vacuum up and down a flight of stairs. Eliminate these headaches and make cleaning faster and easier with a backpack vacuum.

Packed with features like extension wands, specialty nozzles, easy conversion for right-or left-handed operation, a blower option and a HEPA filtration system, this ergonomic choice is powerful enough for commercial cleaners, but priced to be homeowner-friendly.

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Snow Shovel

Snow shoveling is a classic example of a simple household task that can take a tremendous toll on the back. That’s especially true when that snow is wet or densely packed. An ergonomic snow shovel provides multiple points of contact, allowing you to distribute the force and avoid the temptation to over-burden your back muscles with each shovelful of snow.

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Tool Handle Adapter

We’re rounding out this list with a tool handle adapter that converts almost any shovel or rake into a more ergonomic design. In fact, it works on almost any shafted hand tool! Simply slide the adapter handle onto the shaft, tighten, and you’ll radically change the direction of the force that carries across your body. That makes your tool safer and easier to use than a classic, straight-handled model.

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Dan Stout
Ohio-based freelance writer and author Dan Stout is a former residential remodeler, commercial site supervisor and maintenance manager. He’s worked on nearly all aspects of building and DIY including project planning and permitting, plumbing, basic electric, drywall, carpentry, tiling, painting and more. He also publishes noir fantasy thrillers, including The Carter Series, from Penguin imprint DAW Books.