Symmetry Blog

Pack it Light and Wear it Right

Symmetry Physio - Thursday, August 03, 2017

Simple tips to ensure your child's back is cared for while they wear their back packs.

Pack it Light and Wear it Right!

With laptops becoming common in many schools, school backpacks are becoming heavier than ever resulting in excess stress on our kid's growing spines. 

Follow these simple tips from the Australian Physiotherapy Association to ensure your children's backs are looked after. 

  1. Pack it light - backpacks should not exceed more than 10% of the child's body weight. Heavier backpacks can result in shoulder, neck and back pain in children. Help your child get organised and only pack the essentials each day - use different notebooks for each subject, leave heavy text books at school, or use electronic copies when available.
  2. Wear it right - the heaviest items should be packed closest to your child's spine. Both straps should be worn at all times to avoid excess neck and should strain.
  3. All about support - ensure your child's backpack is up to the task! A good backpack should have wide, padded shoulder straps to evenly distribute the load. Also, make sure the backpack is the right size. The back should fit snugly against your child's spine and ideally have semi-rigid stays that can be moulded to your child's back. To make sure the backpack is the right size, have your child wear it and sit down. The backpack should not come above your child's shoulders.
If you have any concerns regarding your child's posture or spine, make an appointment with one of our experienced physiotherapists.

Emily Cousins
Physiotherapist and Exercise Physiologist
Symmetry Physiotherapy

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