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Starting Back Smarts Early On

Two recent studies highlight the importance of proper backpack use in children. According to these studies, heavy backpack use in schoolchildren can lead to the development of both poor posture and back pain. According to the American Chiropractic Association, the following tips should be practiced:

  • Keep backpack weight no greater than 10 percent of child's bodyweight.
  • Backpack should not hang greater than 4 inches below the waistline.
  • Keep pointy/bulky objects away from area that rests on child's back.
  • Avoid purchasing over-sized backpacks.
  • Wear both shoulder straps to distribute weight evenly.
  • Be sure shoulder straps are both wide and padded.
  • Shoulder straps should be adjustable so backpack can be properly fitted.

Source: American Chiropractic Association.