There has been lots of controversy over how much your child’s backpack is going to weigh.
How much does your child’s schoolbag weigh? It is suggested that a child’s schoolbag irrespective of their age their schoolbag should weigh about 10% of their body weight with a backpack style school bag.
When you move your child’s backpack after he or she drops it, does it feel like 20kgs? Maybe they’re complaining about shoulder and back pain?
Maybe you’ve noticed your child struggling to put it on, bending forward while carrying it? This could be a little sign that your child’s backpack is not suited to your child.
A backpack that is too heavy can cause your child to increase the natural curvatures on the spine, prompting upper back rounding, and a ‘forward head posture’, where the chin is poked further forward. Furthermore, slinging a bag over one shoulder can create muscular imbalances, as your child will be repetitively loading his/her body asymmetrically.
Backpacks that are too heavy can cause a lot of problems for kids, like back and shoulder pain, and poor posture.
Some tips to remember when fitting your child’s backpack can include:
- Wear both straps of the backpack- discourage a child from slinging on one shoulder, as this can create muscular imbalances which can lead to postural issues down the track.
- Place heavier items closer to your child’s back and lighter items in the pockets further away.
- Try and keep the backpack light- less than 10 percent of your child’s weight where possible.
- Encourage the child to be organised and only pack what the child needs for that day.
- Encourage your child to be physically active to keep his/her muscles and bones strong while they develop.
- Buy a backpack with wide and padded shoulder straps that are comfortable for your child
- Waist and chest straps help to transfer some of the load- so should be encouraged to use.
- Try not to buy a big backpack to ‘grow into’. To test to see if the backpack is too big when the child sits, the backpack should not extend higher than the child’s shoulders.
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