before you spring into spring, stretch first:

Now that we're on daylight saving time, spring is inching ever closer and the sun is showing up on a regular basis. It's that time of year when fair-weather athletes and gardeners plunge feverishly into action. Which can mean aches and pains await, especially for people who've been winter couch potatoes. Here are some ways to keep the pain to a minimum:
~ Warm up by stretching.
~ If you're doing something like weeding, kneel or sit instead of straining the back and use knee-pads. Wear gloves and add cushioned grips to your tools. Pulling is less traumatic on the wrist than digging. 
~ Keep your work close to you.
~ Remember when you're picking up something even slightly heavy, bend the knees and lift with the legs. Push/Pull with the legs instead of the back.
~ Remember your posture; avoid straining the neck and back; keep stomach muscles tight.
~ Use tools or equipment with the correct handle lengths for your height.
~ Know your limits and STOP before it hurts.
~ The Oregonian