Backpack Carrying Tips for School
A backpack is such an essential everyday accessory that kids use everyday when they go to school. It is common to see kids carrying books, tablets and notebooks everywhere, which usually is a heavy load that can often cause pain and changes in posture. This can be a huge concern for parents whose kids have recently been diagnosed with scoliosis or other structural spinal condition.
Heavy bags are often associated with causing poor posture and discomfort because they can cause the body to compensate through forward leaning, uneven distribution of weight and creating muscle tension in the neck, shoulders and upper back region. While there is no connection between heavy bag carrying and scoliosis, it is important to make sure that your child’s backpack is properly fitted and adjusted to their body.
Tips for Backpack Carrying
Make sure you are using both straps over both shoulders
While it is common to see many kids turn a backpack into a shoulder bag, this type of carry can emphasis scoliosis posturing. Make sure the straps are padded and well-adjusted to distribute weight evening through both sides of the body.
Modify the amount of books/items you are carrying
Your backpack shouldn’t be more than 10-20% of your body weight. Consider a backpack with lightweight material!
Position backpack against your mid-back
This goes back to your strap length – make sure your backpack is not at the level of your lower back or pelvis. It may also be helpful when packing your backpack – to place your heaviest textbooks closer to your back and center of gravity.
Struggling to figure out the best way to carry your backpack without pain? Want to make sure your kid’s backpacks are optimally adjusted for the school year? Our physical therapists can help here !