Back to school means buying backpacks

 

Back to school means buying backpacks

Back to school means buying backpacks

We’re getting close to what some parents will refer to as, “ the most wonderful time of the year”, when our kids return to school. Back to school invariably also means back to school shopping, and often at the top of the list is a new backpack.

Back to school means buying backpacks

For some this will be their first back pack and for others a replacement for the holey, tattered mess that barely survived the year.

Here are some tips for buying, packing and wearing a backpack.

What to buy:   Several things to consider here, size, fit and features.

If your child is a kindergartner, the back pack should be roughly the same size as their back, so a considerably smaller backpack than the one your teen needs. Look for padded shoulder straps that can be adjusted to fit snug to their back, and internal pockets. Lighter materials are better such as nylon or canvas.

Older students, can have a larger bag, look for reinforced bottoms, padded backs, internal laptop sleeves, straps at the waist and chest will help to lessen the load on the back.

How to pack the bag:

This is important because the recommendation for those children under 10 years is that they carry no more than 10% of their body mass, that includes the weight of the bag itself! Older kids can have up to 15% of their body weight in the backpack, think about that for a minute, a 200 pound teenage boy should still only carry 30 pounds in their backpack! Check your child’s bag many high schoolers will have twice that, not good for a growing spine. A lot of this weight can be reduced by limiting a lot of junk from the bag, also bringing home and to class only what you need. Sometimes provisions can be made for students to have 2 sets of textbooks one for school and one for home if they’re having pain associated with carrying heavy textbooks back and forth from school.

Pack the bag with the heaviest items at the back closest to the body and use the pockets to distribute the load.

Wearing the bag:

Wear the bag with both straps, even though it’s cool not to, adjust the straps so they’re snug keeping the bag close to the body, not hanging way back and low like a teen boy’s pants.

As always if your child experiences any back pain, give me a call and we can assess the problem for any concerns.

For blogs on other topics, go to www.drkevinfinn.ca

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