It’s almost Christmas time; the perfect time to talk about the always important Christmas lifts.

You say you’ve never heard of Christmas lifts? Well, I never did either until I came up with this blog topic!

Let’s start with the easiest Christmas lift: Cookie from plate to mouth. The prime movers for this lift are the intrinsic muscles of the hand and the biceps. The picking the cookie is of utmost importance! You must first ascertain the cookie-type (is it soft or hard? Is it round or shaped). The firmness and the shape determine how the cookie is picked up off the plate. Overgripping could lead to unnecessary crumbs and undergripping will ultimately have you bending over to pick the cookie off the floor. The biceps flex to bring the cookie from the plate to your mouth. The flexion should occur with a speed and level of control that will allow no more than 1/3 into your mouth at once. Without speed and control, you might end up jamming the cookies into your two front teeth, which would cause much angst. The secret to the Cookie lift is practice! Eat a cookie and then repeat until you have mastered all shapes, sizes, and types of cookies.

Our second Christmas lift is a bit more complex: lifting presents. As a general rule, as the kids get older, their presents get smaller (and more expensive!), so this lift particularly affects people with younger children and grandchildren. This lift is more about technique than strength. Never bend at the waist to pick a present up off the floor. This will surely injure your back! Always bend at the knees when picking up gifts. Make sure your grip is firm and securely around the edge of the box and rise straight up from your crouch. If you ever have a doubt about your ability to lift a heavy or awkwardly shaped present, please get someone to help you!

Our third Christmas lift is, in reality, a year-long lift. Lift someone’s spirits! There is much in this world that can bring us down. Maybe someone you know is sick. Or they are having a problem at work or with their family. Raise their spirits! A note or a phone call (dare I say a hug?) can go a long way to making someone feel better just by letting him or her know that someone out there is thinking about them. Even better, make someone you don’t even know smile. Hold the door open for the person behind you, say hello to someone with the name on the shirt using their name, let the car on the on-ramp merge into traffic. There are countless ways to brighten someone’s day and it shouldn’t only be done around Christmas; it’s just a great time to start!

Merry Christmas!