Center for Business & Industry

Lifting training, it seems, is an ongoing battle. Developing good lifting technique requires forming good lifting habits. Fortunately, in the case of lifting, once the habit is formed proper lifting can actually become second nature. The POWERLIFT®, method of lifting allows you to internalize good lifting technique without memorizing a complex set of rules that must be sorted through each time we lift. Let's take a look at the POWERLIFT® method.

First ask yourself what you currently know about lifting technique. Most probably you have been taught to "place your feet shoulder distance apart for a nice, wide base, keep your back straight and lift with your legs". This looks good on paper but in reality we soon find that this formula just doesn't work. On closer examination we find that this formula causes us to come up on the balls of our feet, which is an unstable base. Our knees get in the way so we are forced to push the load away from us to clear the knees and we are forced to bend our knees into a deep knee bend position to get down to the load. This form of lifting is called a squat lift and although it works very nicely for small items under a few pounds, it becomes nearly impossible when lifting heavier items such as grocery bags, children or boxes of computer paper, to name a few. This technique can also be torture on the knees.

The POWERLIFT® method overcomes all of the inherent difficulties of the squat lift. To POWERLIFT® approach your load from a 45-degree angle and spread your feet wider than shoulder distance. Then simply lift with your legs like an elevator rather than with your back like a crane. The advantage of POWERLIFT® is that the wider than shoulder width stance allows you to remain flat on your feet for a stable base, your feet and knees are out of the way so you can get close to your load and as you go down for your load with your legs you find that you do not need to bend your knees into that deep knee bend, squat position. Normally your knees only need to bend about 100 degrees in order to make the lift.  This is the same technique that is used by Olympic weight lifters. Remember, everything you lift is “weight” why not use a technique that is known world wide to be the most efficient, most effective technique available. 

For more information on PowerLift, please contact:

Terry Weston
Safety/Health Instructor & Coordinator
1920 Lee Boulevard
North Mankato, MN 56003
Tel: 507-389-7425
Cell: 507-317-5529
Fax: 507-388-9951
Email:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Workplace Safety Consultants

Kayla Ross
Kayla Ross
Faribault Phone:(507) 332-5821
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Robert Weston, CSP, CMSP, CET
Robert Weston, CSP, CMSP, CET
North Mankato Phone::(507) 389-7320
North Mankato Office:B128
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Terry Meschke, ASP
Terry Meschke, ASP
Faribault Phone:(507) 332-5868
Faribault Office:C32
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Terry Weston, CSP, CMSP
Terry Weston, CSP, CMSP
North Mankato Phone::(507) 389-7425
North Mankato Office:B128
Email:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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CBI Faribault Campus

Center for Business & Industry
1225 Third Street SW
Faribault, MN 55021
Local: 507-331-4290
Toll Free: 800-722-9359

Summer Hours: 
Monday-Thursday: 7:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 7:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
Directions | Campus Map

CBI N. Mankato Campus

Center for Business & Industry
1920 Lee Boulevard
North Mankato, MN 56003
Local: 507-389-7203
Toll Free: 800-722-9359

Summer Hours
Monday-Thursday: 7:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 7:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
Directions
| Campus Map

Minnesota State

South Central College,
A member of Minnesota State