To safely lift from a chair or bed (without the use of specialist equipment):
- adopt a stable position with feet apart and one leg slightly forward to maintain balance
- if lifting from a low level, squat using the back, hips and knees rather than bending over – using only the back
- get a good hold with your hands and arms, ideally with most of the person’s weight next to your body
- if they are unable to use their legs, put one arm under the legs and one around the shoulders
- alternately, pivot the person, so their legs are over the side of the bed before lifting
- avoid twisting or leaning sideways, especially while the back is bent
- as the lift is carried out – shoulders should be kept level and facing in the same direction as the hips.
Proper lifting techniques involve:
- placing one arm under the legs and one around the person’s shoulder to lift them
- making sure you have a good grip around the person with your arms and hands
- keeping the majority of the person’s weight close to your body
- asking for assistance if the weight is more than you can safely manage
- moving smoothly and going no faster than walking pace so you remain in control
- keeping your head up and looking towards the direction you are moving
- not allowing the person to hold on around your neck with their arms – this can cause serious injury.
Resident manual handling should only occur in cases which do not involve lifting most or all of the resident’s weight.