Backpacks are available in all shapes and sizes. Most contain multiple storage spaces for books, notebooks, pens, cell phones, or water bottles. Compared to a shoulder-style bag, the backpack provides the best choice for carrying materials between school and home. Why? Because the body's strongest muscles - the back and abs - support the weight evenly. However, if the backpack isn't worn correctly, the weight of the pack causes additional strain to the body.
Health Risks of a Heavy Backpack
Granted, a lack of inactivity or sitting in class all day can lead to a back ache. Most kids tote their backpacks to each class, placing additional strain on back muscles. The American Occupational Therapy Association suggests a student should carry no more than 10 to 15 percent of his body weight in a backpack - here.
A book-filled backpack that is improperly carried places strain on the shoulders. Often, this causes a student to lean backward. To compensate, a student leans forward at the hips. This constant movement makes the spine compress unnaturally. This is when injury to the neck, shoulders, or back is at its greatest.
Heavy backpacks also lead to poor posture. This is especially true for girls and young children who stuff their backpacks. These two groups typically have lower body weights, and the extra strain leads to poor posture.
Wear a Backpack Wisely
The American Occupational Therapy Association reports more than 40 million students in the United States carry a backpack. To reduce the risk of back pain or strain, these tips need to be introduced to students.