As we gain momentum with spring we can get a little over enthusiastic. Most acupuncture clinics and indeed osteopath surgeries receive requests for help with back aches, arthritic aches and general structural aches and pains. Many of us approach the lighter evenings and sunnier days with gusto, forgetting that we have had little strenuous exercise over the winter months. Our advice for the season would be to start gardening slowly building up over several weeks. The best approach is to stretch before you dig, mow and sow. 1. Get on all fours and stretch like a dog or cat. 2. Hold one arm out in front of you and use the other to stretch it over your chest. 3. Stand facing a wall, put both palms against it, gradually walk your fingers up the wall until you feel like you are stretching as far a possible without causing any pain. If any of this is uncomfortable, do not do it. The idea is to stretch before you garden in order to avoid injury, only stretch as far as you are able to without causing yourself pain.