Ways to Avoid Back Injuries


Some of the best ways to prevent back injuries while at work is to develop habits that reduce the amount of strain and force on your back. These are some pretty basic things that you can do to prevent this:

Avoid Lifting and Bending Whenever You Can

Anytime you can avoid straining your back from not lifting or bending, try to do so! If you don’t use your back like a lever, you aren’t putting it under potentially damaging force, and therefore rests your back.

Place objects on a table or chair

If you leave something on a table or some other elevated surface, you won’t need to bend down to pick it up again, and it saves your back from some unnecessary force.

Raise or lower shelves

The best area for lifting is between your shoulders, torso, and waist. Place heavy objects onto shelves at mid-torso level, and lighter objects on higher shelves. Use carts / dolleys to move objects, instead of lifting them yourself

 Use Proper Lifting Procedure 

You can’t always avoid lifting and carrying heavy stuff, but there is a simple way to reduce the amount of pressure and stress placed on your spine when you do so. By bending the knees, your spine will stay straight and will keep it in a better alignment, and by doing so, you take away the ‘lever principle’ forces which can seriously hurt your back.

  • Take a balanced stance with your feet about a foot apart; one foot can be behind, and the other next to it.
  • Squat down to grab the object, but keep a balanced posture with your heels off of the floor.
  • Use your hands (not your fingers, though) to get a good grip on the load of whatever you’re carrying. Make sure you will be able to hold the object in an easy and painless way, so you won’t have to stop, put it down, and change you grip later.
  • Slowly lift (without moving very fast) using your legs and abdominal muscles and keeping the load is close to your chest as possible, as if hugging it.
  • Once you’re standing, change your direction by moving your feet in a full about face. Do not twist your back!

Watch how a back injury can change your life:


What if you already have a back injury?

One way to deal with back pain is by receiving a diagnosis and regular Chiropractic care. Additionally, there are also exercises and therapy by physical therapists. There has been an explosion of new yoga and acupuncture studios as well because of their popularity in dealing with acute and chronic muscle and joint pain.



Key Points to Consider in a Marketing Your Law Office

One of the first things a new lawyer develops is a marketing plan in order to support their career. For this reason, a marketing plan is normally on the minds of many new lawyers as well as veteran lawyers looking to transition to a private practice. So, what makes up a good marketing plan? What components do you need to put in place to ensure success? Explained below are five keys of a good lawyer-marketing plan.

But first, there are certain things you need to be aware of; you can’t possibly get out there and get a perfect marketing plan, there is no such thing and if there were, it most certainly could not work for all lawyers in all situations. Different lawyers have different goals, hence differing marketing budgets, expertise and types of audiences, which also means that differing types of lawyers need various types of marketing plans as well. For instance, a veteran with years of experience and thousands of dollars in their budget will need something different from a new lawyer who only has hundreds of dollars in their budget and no experience at all. You have to make it work for you, and you can use these key elements:

The cost factor
The very first thing you need to establish is a marketing budget. Try to do this before you make any other plans at all. It will be very tempting to shop around for marketing services so that you can set the budget based on those services but you have to understand that this is financially backward. Decide before hand how much you can afford to spend in about a year and have a general number before you move on other things.

The immediacy factor
Consider how quickly you need to have the marketing program generating business in order for you to stay afloat. Put simply, how long will you depend on the plan right from day one? This will actually determine the type of marketing you need to use, SEO or PPC in terms of online marketing strategies. An SEO campaign will grow steadily with time but it will take time. On the other hand, a PPS marketing strategy could begin generating traffic as soon as it starts running. This means that, if you are a new lawyer with no referrals, it would be best to use both strategies, SEO for long term purposes and PPC for short term.

The audience factor
You need to consider who you are trying to reach exactly because it will influence how you need to reach them. If, for instance you are a real estate attorney, you could advertise on a TV ad during a real estate show break. This would be the same case for other marketing strategies, if you use direct mail, you will get financial and geographical demographics that match your target. In case you are planning to use search engines, you will use the kind of phrases that your audience will be searching for. You should do enough research on your target audience so that your plan will deliver positive results.

Marketing mix
You have to diversify your marketing plans by spreading them to multiple channels. This is you not putting your eggs in one basket. There are numerous services, which help lawyers expand their web presence, with services such as blogging, web marketing, search engine optimization, online PR and PPC. Of course, you need to be prepared to try to see the one that will work best for you.

Testing and tracking
You need to keep track of your marketing results so you will know what works and what does not. You might be investing in techniques that are not yielding results to your favor. Actually, without a testing and tracking process, you won’t get to know your ROI. You could keep the following two steps in kind to know how to track efficiently:

Common sense
This is typically the first rule of tracking. Common sense will guide you in creating an effective marketing plan.

Proper expectations
This is another important principle because if you expect too much from one medium, it might disappoint you in the end. For example, you cannot rely on SEO to generate website leads while it is normally good at generating traffic. You will still need to capitalize that traffic in a way. To test SEO, you will need to use search engine ranking and site traffic instead of leads.

You will probably need more plans and make more decisions but if you start with these tips, you will be headed in the right direction.


Article One – Series on Work-Related Injuries Procedures & Tips: Transporting Granite and Marble Safely

Rock Solid Tips for Moving Transporting Heavy Stone!

granite-transport-1In general, unloading slabs of granite and/or stone can be dangerous. It is important to be aware of the appropriate precautions. Always alert any employers or employees to the many hazards associated with handling slabs of granite, transporting, storing, or loading. Serious injuries and fatalities can occur when handing or unloading large and heavy slabs of granite. Sometimes stone slabs can weigh from several hundred to several thousand pounds. And liability laws vary from state to state, even including size or weight. For instance, kitchen remodeling RI contractors have several brackets of weight which determine what kind of vehicle is allowed to deliver it. Each piece varies. Over 46 fatalities occurred from 1984 to 2006! Many of these fatalities took place in Providence, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and Connecticut.

(Video helpful in instructing safely transporting stone slabs)

To safely move heavy slabs of granite or stone, one must be aware of the correct process. There are wooden supports in the trucks that deliver the slabs. Often, these wooden supports shift or break in the truck. Without any wooden supports, the slabs can shift and collapse. It is a bad idea to remove supports carelessly when unloading. Employees have been trapped or crushed before, due to unforeseen shifts or collapsing supports.

When slabs are taken off the truck, they are usually placed in a rack structure for storage. Racks can be constructed of metal or wood. In rare cases, A-Frames aren’t designed properly to support the weight of the granite slabs. In other cases, the slabs aren’t secured with restraining devices. When handling and moving stone slabs, it is vital to use mechanical equipment, like powered trucks, and mechanical equipment. Clamps, or hooks, chains, and straps are often used for rigging. Even after moving the slabs of stone, or granite from the racks to the designated area, employees can still be crushed by attaching a lifting device.

It is important to note that you should stay away from the shadow of the stone slab, in case it falls. It is important to pre-plan the work and identify the safe work practices, and needed equipment.

In Summary, always implement safe slab handling procedures for transporting, unloading, and loading from the storage. Always make sure that the racks are properly installed. Maintain the rack, make sure no other objects are interfering with the placement of the poles. Never allow employees to use damaged storage racks. Always keep an eye out for cracked welds and structural members. Make sure poles or other uprights are seated properly in sockets or holes.

(Check out a very interesting and useful table on  calculating injury-free lifting capabilities . The science behind charting these lifting capabilities are both informative and fascinating!)



Mistakes People Make When Hiring A Lawyer and How To Avoid them


There are numerous people, who suffer from choosing the wrong lawyer, and there are numerous lawyers, who choose to take advantage. There are lawyers who choose to neglect certain cases not just for weeks but months and maybe even years, those who won’t be honest about the case and others who will charge more than they have done. Below are some of the mistakes most people make when hiring lawyers and they should be avoided at all costs.

Combines experience hype
There are law firms who tout to have years of combined experience but the only thing they are trying to do is enhance their credentials. To know a lawyer with experience, don’t go with this hype. They should have their own years of experience instead of hiding behind “combined” which only makes them sound more grand.

Laundry list hype
Law firms that have a list of services might not be the best choice for you. Jack-of-all-trades is normally a master of none so how much are they dedicated to the type of case you have. Of course, a firm could have a laundry list but have different lawyers who specialize in different cases. In such a case, find the lawyer who deals with the issue you have and find out how long they have been in practice. Ask for client testimonials from that lawyer and see if they are actually worth it or you are better off getting another lawyer.

Bigger is better hype
There are numerous things where bigger does not mean better let alone the best, and law firms are one of them. Actually, if you want to have personal attention, you might find it in a less busy medium size firm or a smaller firm. Just because a law firm has group photographs with all the secretaries and clerks does not mean you will be more attended to. You need to ask questions about the services you seek and see the right lawyer for the case. If you are a lawyer, and you need to grow your business it’s a good idea to focus on your branding and marketing. It’s not good to “hype” up a business that doesn’t exist, but it’s also not to your advantage to have so little business! If you have a website, consider doing some configurations to your site to get better search results. If you’re in New England, check out how seo providence can help you today!

If it’s too good to be true
Cheapest is seldom the best. Still, that does not mean that the most expensive is the best. You have to keep in mind that you want someone who will help you, someone attentive, experienced, and knowledgeable and with a good reputation.

Cost is a legitimate factor in hiring a lawyer but it should not override these things. Cheap is always expensive, if you get a cheap lawyer with bad advice, eventfully you will have to hire another one to repair their mistakes. It’s important to educate yourself on what a law firm actually is, so that you don’t fall prey to silly semantics.

  • Do not assume

You can’t always believe the yellow pages ads; lawyers are not equal, so investigate before you hire them. Inquire about their reputation in the community and check out what their clients have to say about them. Don’t assume that a pre-paid lawyer is the best either; actually, the best lawyers are normally not from this panel. Of course, you might not need the best lawyer but still, make sure they are qualified to complete the task you have for them.

Once you have selected a lawyer of your choice, try to avoid making these mistakes

  • Written fee agreement

Without a written agreement, you can’t really be sure that you and your lawyer have come to an understanding. A written fee agreement will clarify and solidify any expectations from the client and the lawyer. The agreement normally includes the responsibilities of each party as well as the parameters of presentation. In case your lawyer does not mention this, you should.

  • Do not sign a document without reading it first

Regardless of what it is, read it. The fact that it was presented by your lawyer does not mean that you should not read it; you even have the right to ask any questions should you not understand it. If there is something incorrect or you want omitted, you will have the chance of telling the lawyer to see to it.

  • Failing to ask questions

Ask any question about anything you don’t understand, ask the lawyer about their experience, about their charges, what they expect from you, how they plan to present the case, who will they be working with on your case, anything you feel is relevant. Some of those legal terms that most people don’t understand, make sure you ask what it means when they mention something you are not familiar with.

  • Failing to ask for copies of the documents you sign

Whatever documents were involved, fee agreements, divorce manual, office policies you name it, ask for the copy. Once you receive them, keep them safely at least until sometime after the case is concluded and no chance of an appeal.