Try to shovel when the snow is still light and powdery. Also:
• Dress appropriately. Light, layered, water-repellent clothing provides both ventilation and insulation. It is also important to wear the appropriate head coverings, as well as mittens or gloves and thick, warm socks. Take a break if you feel yourself getting too hot or too cold. Avoid falls by wearing shoes or boots that have slip-resistant soles.
• Use good timing and technique. When lifting snow, bend your knees, keep your back as straight and vertical as possible, and stand up. The closer your hand is to the scoop, the lighter the load will feel. When pushing snow, keep the handle low, in your hip area, and push using your legs. Take small amounts of snow. And do not throw the snow over your shoulder or to the side—the twisting motion can stress your back.
• Pace yourself and watch for warning signs. Take frequent breaks and replenish fluids to prevent dehydration. If you feel pressure or pain in your chest, or discomfort spreading to your shoulders, neck, jaw, arms, or back, call for an ambulance immediately, chew and swallow an aspirin, and lie down. You could be having a heart attack. People often shovel first thing in the morning, when heart attacks are more likely. That's why the American College of Emergency Physicians advises against shoveling if you have a history of heart attacks. In this case, it’s probably best to enlist someone to remove the snow for you.