If you’ve ever seen a professional welder, I’m sure you are aware of how demanding of an activity it can be. It is one of those tasks that require both skill and strength. So, if you are wondering whether or not does welding require heavy lifting, then my answer is a resounding yes.
Welding will require welders to carry about 5 pounds and be able to lift about 10 pounds of heavy materials. Physical strength, stamina, flexibility, and patience are required and hence, there is little to no chance to avoid heavy weight lifting during welding.
Welding itself is considered as an act of labor and employers will almost always expect you to do some lifting in your workplace. However, I understand that many of you might have concerns about welding and weight lifting. Hence, I’ll further discuss this topic in this article, so be sure to read till the end.
Will I Always Be Expected to Do Weight Lifting When Welding?
The answer to this question is not only subjective but varies from place to place depending on your work and its environment. However, just like any other labor work, welding is no different. You will be most certainly expected to go through some weight lifting to get things done.
Nevertheless, some welding workplaces will have cranes, forklifts, and other convenient lifting equipment available for weight lifting. This however depends on your employees and the workplace standard of your job. You may not always be this lucky to have this sort of assistance, however, it’s still something that you can always hope for when applying for a welding job.
Sometimes there might even be specialized workers who will explicitly do the weight lifting for you. However, you just still might be expected to do some of the ancillary activities yourself. Many materials used in welding such as metals, plastics, woods, wire spools, and boxes of rods usually under 50 lbs. can be expected to be lifted by you manually from time to time.
Anything above 50 lbs. can be lifted through help of machines and lifting equipment.
Even still you can always expect help from your colleagues as well, depending on the field you’re in and your work environment. Nevertheless, it’s always best to be prepared to face some heavy weight lifting in this work field. The process of welding might not exclusively ask for it but the ancillary activities revolving around just might.
Here’s an ice-breaker, just because welding may require you to lift some weights from time to time doesn’t mean that’s the whole highlight of it. Some days you’ll be facing more welding than lifting activities, however, that doesn’t mean the activities that do require you to lift weights will always be overly physically excruciating.
Can Physical and Health Issues Stop Me from Welding?
The process of welding is mostly doing the fusing of two or more objects and making joints with your heated torches exactly as asked. Excluding the weight lifting that may come with it, the whole welding process itself may come with other physically draining activities.
Welding itself is a physical job that will require you to spend some excruciating hours kneeling, bending, stooping, waiting, standing, and simply welding. The high temperatures involved, the immense sweating, and the constant need for welding of materials will require a physically fit welder.
No employee would want a welder who isn’t physically capable of withstanding the labor both in and outside the work aspects of welding. Even good eyesight and hand-coordination are important to precisely work through welding in any situation without flaws.
Hence, if you’re known to suffer from arthritis, poor eyesight, back pain, or have gone through surgeries, then welding is not for you. Your health issues will only cause further drawbacks for your employees and will also pay a heavy toll on yourself. Thus, it’s always wise to back off from welding if serious health conditions are present in your body.
However, if it’s explicitly weight lifting that you know you won’t be able to do in your workplace. Then, there may be some way out or special considerations that may be taken depending on you speaking things out with your employee
Many proficient and experienced welders in their old-age may be unfit to carry weight but still may pack their welding skills. If you’re highly skilled in the field of welding but have physical issues stopping you from weight lifting, do mention it to your employees before-hand. They might consider letting you exclusively stay within the limits of welding only.
However, this is something that will not always land you a job in the field of welding. Hence, it’s better to consider other work alternatives aside from welding if special arrangements aren’t made for you.
If you’re a person who doesn’t prefer having ergonomic risk factors in your work-place, then you shouldn’t consider being a welder. Being a welder will require lifting, make you assert continuous force, work for long hours and be in uncomfortable positions all the time.
If your ideal job isn’t close to what welding is all about then you won’t be happy doing what you’ve chosen in the long run. A job is something you should enjoy, not do out of desperation.
How Do I Physically Prepare Myself for a Welding Career?
Welding is an active job that will require you to stay active and be able to stroll past through any ergonomic risks by preparing from before. Thus, if you still want to vouch for a welding career but don’t feel like you can physically manage it, this section will focus on preparing you for it.
Welding is an activity that you can do if you want to cater your craftsmanship to the world as well as not stay idle while doing it. However, even welding may cause you to suffer from physical discomfort if you’re not that active or not doing it right.
Hence to keep the ergonomics right beside on your end, try to fit the job towards your body instead of forcing your body to fit the job.
To keep welding ergonomically these are some of the solutions you can follow to not physically drain yourself during welding on a daily basis.
- Use cushion shoe inserts or mats to lower strain on your legs and feet.
- Make sure you use an adjustable table so that you can bring your welding area up towards your eye level.
- Take frequent breaks when possible instead of always straining your body to finish work faster.
- Try moving around from time to time to keep your blood flowing. Standing in one particular position for long will only make your body feel stiffer.
Being a highly physical task, proper fitness will greatly improve your work and also your wellbeing while welding. For this you need to focus on your stamina, strength and flexibility. Here are some tips on how you can improve these three things.
Stamina: Doing activities that get your heart rate up will further increase your stamina and allow you to keep welding for a longer time. These will keep your heart and lungs healthy and extend your endurance further.
Stamina increasing exercises include: Treadmills, running, swimming, cycling, etc.
Strength: Strengthening exercises can keep your muscles on the job more active, less rusty, and more resilient. This will prevent you from straining your muscles on repetitive movements. Lifting will also become much easier and make the whole process faster.
Strength increasing exercises include: Straight crunches, shoulder presses, shoulder lifts, and pushups.
Flexibility: To make your body be able to bend, scoop and reach corners more flexibly. Stretching is your go-to set of exercises to attain a flexible, balanced, and well-coordinated body. Most of these exercises will focus on your overall posture and prevent your wrist from feeling rusty.
The following exercises can help you have better flexibility and prevent injuries: Cat-camel stretches, Shoulder stretches, prayer stretches and wrist bending.
Does that answer all your querieson whether or not does welding require heavy lifting? If so, I insist you keep all this knowledge you’ve attained in mind before deciding whether you want to weld or not. After all, unless you’re not considerate towards the various limitations and dangers that come with it, you will only end up regretting it later on.
Hence, my advice for you is to consider the restrictions before making up your mind on welding. As welding itself requires hard-work, determination, patience, knowledge, and practice, it’s not something everyone may be able to do. Thanks for reading till the end and I wish you all the best.