UNION, NJ - Mother Nature is fickle as always and Stella may not be dumping as much snow as many forecasters anticipated. However, there will still be shoveling to do when the storm ends.

Snow shoveling is hard work and every winter there are always stories of injuries and heart attacks. So, how can residents avoid the dangers of snow shoveling?

·       Snow shoveling is a workout. Stretch before starting just as with any physical exercise.

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·       Wear boots or shoes with treads to avoid slipping while shoveling.

·       Utilize a snow blower if possible. If not, begin to clear the snow by removing the top inches first. Avoid trying to clear right down to the ground with the first shovel full.

·       Push the snow instead of lifting whenever possible.

·       Bend from the knees, not the back.

·       Avoid twisting or throwing the snow to its new spot. Movements like those increase the risk of back injury.

Snow shoveling is actually a strenuous workout. It places more strain on the heart because it involves the upper body. Be sure to pace the process, taking breaks every 15 to 20 minutes. Remember the heart attack warning signs.

·       Increased heart rate

·       Shortness of breath

·       Chest tightness

·       Excessive sweating