For a few days now, children have been heading back to school. Are yours struggling to carry their school supplies? Not sure their backpacks are ideal for their posture?
Since children carry their backpacks for quite a while every day, it's important that they fit properly to prevent back injuries. Here are a few things to consider!
- Select a suitable backpack: The shoulder straps should be adjustable and padded to improve comfort. For added comfort, it may be worth opting for a bag with a padded back. Shoulder straps should be about 5 cm wide. The backpack should also have a belt that attaches at the waist for better weight distribution.
- Choose the right backpack size: The backpack should be no wider than your child's back and no higher than shoulder height. The bottom of the bag should also be just above your child's bottom.
- Your child's bag should not be too heavy: They should be able to stand up straight and walk naturally with their hands free on either side of their body. If they need to take a step forward to put the bag on their shoulders, or if they have to hold the straps with their hands, it's a sign that the weight is poorly distributed or that the bag is too heavy. This is also the case if they walk leaning forward or to one side or if they complain of backache or tingling in their hands. Remind your child to bring home only the essentials to avoid unnecessary excess weight.
- Don't forget to tell your child to always fasten the waist belt on the backpack and avoid carrying the bag on one shoulder. This habit can lead to spinal deviation over time.
Over time, carrying a backpack that's too heavy or ill-fitting (as well as poor posture habits) can cause unnecessary strain on joints and muscles. The last thing you want is for your child to develop muscular tension or back, shoulder or neck pain.
Choosing a backpack should be based on your child's needs before its visual appearance. If you intend to reuse the previous year's backpack, make sure that the straps are still securely attached and that there are no tears. A shoe repairperson or seamstress/seamster can fix some minor problems. Don't hesitate to ask for advice.
Happy back-to-school time!