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Dear Savvy Senior: Can you recommend some good ergonomic gardening gear for seniors? My 72-year-old mother loves to work in the garden, but has been plagued by various gardening injuries this year. — Looking for Solutions

DEAR LOOKING: Gardening can be tough on an aging body. It often requires repetitive stooping, squatting, kneeling, gripping and lifting, which can lead to back and knee pain, carpal tunnel syndrome and other injuries.

A slew of new and improved gardening gear stands ready to help make your mom’s gardening easier. This equipment is lightweight, comfortable to use, and ergonomically designed to help protect her body from gardening’s physical strains.

Here are several things that can help.

■ Gloves: Many specially designed gloves can improve your mom’s grip and protect her hands while she works.

Two of the best are the Atlas Nitrile Touch Garden Gloves (available at amazon.com for less than $6), which are coated with a flexible synthetic rubber. And the ReliefGrip Gardening gloves (bionicgloves.com, $35), that have extra padding in the palm and finger joints that can improve grip, and cause fewer calluses and blisters.

■ Digging tools: Several ergonomic tools can help protect your mom’s wrists by reducing the bending and twisting wrist movement that often comes with digging and weeding.

Some good options include Radius Garden tools (radiusgarden.com), which make a variety of curved-handle hand tools (scooper, weeder, transplanter, cultivator and trowel) and shovels that run between $10 and $50. And Corona tools (coronatoolsusa.com), which makes the ComfortGEL and eGrip hand garden tools.

Another excellent product is the Cobrahead Weeder and Cultivator (cobrahead.com), an all-purpose digging and weeding tool that’s available in a short-handle version for close-up work for $25; and a long-handle style for standing work for $60.

■ Knee and back aids: Knee pads and garden seats can also protect your mom’s knees and save her back when working close to the ground. Some popular products sold today through the Gardener’s Supply Company (gardeners.com) ­— a leading developer and manufacturer of innovative garden equipment — are the GardenEase Kneeler ($70), which is a kneeling pad with support handles; the Garden Kneeler ($35) that’s a kneepad/garden bench combo; and the Deluxe Tractor Scoot with Bucket Basket, which is a height-adjustable, swivel garden seat on wheels ($90).

■ Pruning tools: Fiskars (fiskars.com) makes some of the finest ergonomic pruning tools that have also earned the Arthritis Foundation’s ease of use commendation, because of their patented PowerGear mechanisms that increase leverage to make cutting three times easier than traditional pruners. The Fiskars PowerGear Hand Pruners, Loppers and Hedge Shears all run between $25 and $48.

Bahco and Corona also make nice ergonomic pruning tools and handsaws that you can see at bahcostore.com or coronatoolsusa.com.

■ Watering: To help make watering easier, there are lightweight garden hoses; soaker or drip hoses that can be snaked throughout the garden; and hose chests that can automatically rewind themselves.

Some good companies that make these products include Water Right Inc. (waterrightinc.com), which makes a variety of super lightweight garden and coil hoses.

The DIG Corp. (digcorp.com), which makes convenient drip irrigation kits and micro sprinkler kits. And Suncast (suncast.com), the leading maker of self-winding hose reels, and hose carts.

■ Container gardening: Raised garden beds, trellises, and container gardening is also an easier way to grow plants and flowers because it brings the garden to you, eliminating most stooping, squatting and kneeling.

The Gardener’s Supply Co. (gardeners.com) offers a wide range of raised beds and garden containers priced from $10 to $350.

Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit SavvySenior.org. Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC Today show and author of “The Savvy Senior” book.

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