Anyone who has ever had to move from one home to another can identify with the challenge of lifting a sofa or fridge. Weight combined with awkward shaping can make an entertainment center or an appliance a nightmare when it comes time to relocate. In recent years, a simple device called the Forearm Forklift has appeared on the market. It is a set of straps that fit under the object being moved that enables movers to transport the object with less chance of dropping it or injuring themselves. Using the forearm forklift is easy.
Lay the straps down underneath the object being lifted. The straps should be parallel to each other or in a criss-cross fashion, depending on the object being moved. Always have a partner with you, because it is not safe to use the Forearm Forklift by yourself in most cases. Each of you grab two straps from opposite ends and adjust the length by lightly bending your knees and selecting the opening in the strap to slide your arm into. The strap should rest entirely on your forearm right at the crook of the elbow. Place your palms against the object being moved and when both of you are ready, use your legs to lift the object a few inches off the ground so it can be carried to its new destination. Lower it by bending your knees and keeping your back straight as you both lower it to the ground.
Steel-toed shoes and back braces are recommended anytime you're moving a heavy object and you should not use the Forearm Forklift if you have back problems or are pregnant. Always make sure the path that you'll be carrying the object through is clear and free of trip or slip hazards. You always want to inspect the straps before use to make sure they are not torn or frayed. If they are, they need immediate replacement and should not be used.
The straps are tested to hold 600 pounds, so they are ideal for moving heavy furniture and appliances. Because the straps are adjustable, going up and down stairs is easier because the person on the higher side can have shorter straps than the person on the low end, making it easier for both and lessening the chance of back injury. The straps are very effective for stabilizing mattresses too, and work equally well on lighter items that are awkward due to their size or dimensions.