Backpacks are a popular and practical way for children and teenagers to carry schoolbooks and supplies. When used correctly, backpacks can be a good way to carry the necessities of the school day. However, backpacks that are too heavy or worn incorrectly can cause problems.
Warning signs your child’s backpack might be too heavy:
- Difficulty putting on or taking off the backpack
- Pain when wearing the backpack
- Tingling or numbing in the arms or legs
- Red strap marks over the shoulders
- Any change in side-to-side posture when wearing the backpack
Tips on how to pack and wear a backpack
- The backpack shouldn’t weigh more than 10% of child’s body weight.
- Put heaviest items closest to the child’s back and lighter items in front.
- Use different compartments to distribute weight evenly.
- If backpack is still too heavy, the child can carry a book or use a backpack with wheels.
- When the child is picking up the backpack they should bend from knees and not waist.
- Distribute backpack weight evenly by using both straps.
- Make sure the backpack does not extend past the shoulders or below the top of hipbone.
- Pack it light and wear it right!
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