This a task that must be done and with a family several times a week if not every day. I just got done reading an article on making laundry easier with Fibromyalgia on Facebook from About.com. It was great as I am doing laundry today and I am so far behind on it. It is the only real task I am doing besides going shopping for tile with hubby when he is home from work.
Ideas to make it easier are many. Things listed in the article are great and I do some of them myself. Don't use large baskets. They are awkward and if loaded up are too heavy for us to carry. Use small baskets especially if you have to carry up stairs. I don't carry upstairs as I have my boys put away their own laundry.
Make sure you take breaks between loads and kinds of loads. If you have a lot of clothes you must hang either wash with items folded or make sure the next load is a folded load, that way you are doing a repetitive action too many times at one. When I do laundry I start a load, dry a load and fold a load, then rest till time to switch it all again. If my boys or husband are home I ask them to help change from washer to dryer to save that bending and twisting step since we do not have a front load set on pedestals. One thing I want and would recommend to anyone with Fibro or any back problems.
I have a counter in the laundry room to fold laundry on, but isn't the easiest to use when more then a load or too so I fold laundry in my bedroom on the bed. The master bedroom is on the main floor so that is not too hard to do if the basket is not too heavy. Then it all has to be put away before bed. Each person in our family does their own. My little trick to get it put away.
Try and keep your laundry products where you can reach them easily. Don't buys large containers. If you want to buy in bulk like I do have a smaller container to divide it up in. I like powdered soap as I can just take a scoop instead of lifting a large jug.
I have large baskets in the laundry room to sort clothes into. Another thing everyone is suppose to do is to sort there clothe accordingly. Whites, colors, darks, jean, and hubby's work clothes. Then I don't have to take hampers and sort all at once. I can run a load when I see the basket is full enough for a load.
Now I do struggle to get everyone to help. I do get laundry piled in bathrooms or bedrooms and I have to be on the boys and Ed to pick up and sort, but it is a pretty good thing when all do what is expected. Setting the expectation is the hardest. Even the youngest at 5 can do these small things to help. A few simple changes and help from others makes a very hard job into a tolerable one.