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Raking leaves is an autumnal job that most gardeners will have on their November to-do list.

It’s a task that uses all the major muscle groups in the arms, shoulders, back and legs and an hour of it will give you a workout that’ll burn about 400 calories.

However, if you have a weak grip, it’s a job you might not be looking forward to but there are ways to make it easier:

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Pick the tool that’s right for you – rakes can be made from metal, wood and plastic. A lightweight rake, for example with a plastic head and aluminium handle, can reduce strain on your hands.

Warm-up – whatever exercise you are doing, on colder days your muscles will appreciate being warmed up with gentle stretches.

Pace yourself – avoid fatigue by raking in short bursts.

Stay upright – prevent yourself having to bend over by getting a rake that’s the right height for you.

Improve comfort – adding handles and arm support attachments can improve the usability and comfort of your tools.

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If you need to sit to rake, then short or extendable handle tools will make manoeuvrability easier.

There is also a way to avoid raking leaves from your lawn entirely – get the mower out. This will not only chop up the leaves for speedier decomposition but also help reduce the need to use a rake to tackle thatch and moss build-up.

What to do with autumn leaves

Autumn leaves have many uses for your garden and in this guide we will explore them.

Find out more