Parents, teachers, school administrators and health care specialists are increasingly concerned about the issue of children's health and safety with their backpacks.
Widespread media attention is evidence of this growing problem.
The following tips were provided by BackPackSafe
Step 1: Choose Right
Choosing the right size backpack is the most important step to safe backpack use.
Tip: Bring a friend to help you measure your backpack properly.
Step 2: Pack Right.
The maximum weight of the loaded backpack should not exceed 15 % of your body weight, so pack only what is needed.
Tip: If the backpack forces the wearer to move forward to carry, it's overloaded.
Step 3: Lift Right.
Face the Pack -Bend at the Knees - Use both hands and check the weight of the pack. - Lift with the legs - Apply one shoulder strap and then the other.
Tip: Don't sling the backpack onto one shoulder.
Step 4: Wear Right.
Use both shoulder straps - snug, but not too tight.
Tip: When the backpack has a waist strap - use it.
See www.backpacksafe.com for more information.
Additional information can also be found on the Journal of Clinical Chiropractic Pediatrics website who conclude:
It is evident that backpacks have an influence on back pain in children, but it is not clear if this pain is caused by weight alone or by multiple factors such as design, time worn, and physical fitness of child. It seems difficult to design a backpack that would be suitable for all children and usable in every situation. It is fair to say that backpack weight should not exceed that maximum range of 10-15% BW, however the backpack weight appropriate for each child should be determined individually.
Chiropractic Care for Backpack Injuries
Chiropractic care is effective for treating injuries already inflicted from poor backpack use, RSI or sporting injuries. Chiropractic treatment for children keeps young bodies feeling young longer & helps to keep children active & interested in sport.