Friday, August 3, 2012

Backpacks and Back Pain

Did you know that choosing the right backpack can help prevent serious back pain and injury? Did you also know that the way your child chooses to wear your bag can also affect back pain? Here is a simple list to follow on what to do and what not to do when it comes to choosing and wearing a backpack.
  1. Look for a backpack made out of a lightweight canvas material. The lighter, the better.
  2. Find a backpack with thick, padded straps. Wider straps provide optimal support.
  3. Adjust the shoulder straps so that the bag sits close to your child's body.
  4. If you find a backpack with an extra waist strap, make sure your child uses it for even better for weight distribution.
  5. When wearing the backpack, your child should use both straps, and not carry it on one shoulder. If he/she does do that, it will lead to uneven weight distribution and can lead to long term back problems in the future.
  6. When filling the backpack, make sure to put the heaviest items in first so they are closest to your child's body. This will help keep your child standing upright and minimize leaning forward.
  7. Make sure your child's backpack isn't too heavy for them. The full bag should not weigh more than 15% of his/her body weight. So for a 100 pound child, their bag shouldn't weigh more than 15 pounds.

    While you are purchasing all the basic school supplies such as pencils, pens, notebooks, rulers and so on, make sure that the backpack they keep everything in is right for them.