Are your kids ready to go back to school?

Are your kids ready to go back to school?

The new school year is coming at full force, but what’s back to school season without the perfect backpack? Backpacks are a helpful accessory every child needs; however, they can really be a pain in the back. Unevenly or improperly distributed weight can lead to poor posture and even distort the spinal column. This can cause muscle strain, headaches; back, neck, and arm pain; and even nerve damage. More than 50% of young people experience lower back pain by their teenage years and research indicates that this could be caused by improper use of backpacks at an early age!

So how can you help your child prevent this?

First, it’s important to choose the right backpack. Pick out a vinyl or canvas backpack as they are lighter than other materials. The bag should have two wide, adjustable, padded shoulder straps, as well as a hip and waist strap. Furthermore, make sure the bag holds only what is needed for that day and that the weight is distributed evenly. The total weight should be no more than 10-15% of your child’s own body weight. Last, ensure that the backpack is worn properly with both shoulder straps used and adjusted.

Authored by Anna Jiang, White Oaks S.S. Grade 11 Summer Coop Student