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The Backpack Advice You Need To Know

With back to school upon us, it’s time to start thinking about having the right backpack to keep

your child healthy & pain free. Carrying around a backpack that is too heavy or improperly fit

can put your child at risk for an injury to their neck, back or shoulders. So we’ve put together

some tips to help decrease the risk and make the school year a little less stressful.


Make sure that your child isn’t carrying too much by limiting the weight of their backpack to 10-

15% of their total body weight. For example, an 80lb child should have a backpack that weighs

no more than 8-12lbs when full.

It’s also important to keep in mind proper weight distribution in the backpack. Keep the

heaviest items closer to your child’s back to allow for more support and prevent items from

sliding around as they carry their bags.

Additionally, going through their backpack either nightly or weekly in order to remove any

unnecessary items will help limit unwanted weight from accumulating.


Backpacks come in all different sizes and making sure your child has the right size pack for them

is very important. The backpack should fit snuggly on your child’s back, while the bottom of the

backpack should end a couple inches above their waist. If the bag hangs too low or too loose it

can result in back or neck strain.

Furthermore, purchasing a backpack with well-padded shoulder straps will also help decrease

the pressure felt on their shoulders. However, this is only helpful if they are wearing the

backpack on both shoulders evenly.

Added Features

Waist straps can help distribute some of the weight from the back to the waist and prevent

poor posture under load. Meanwhile, padded backs can provide even more comfort and

support. These added features should be considered if your child has a longer commute to

school or needs to be carrying a backpack toward the top end of their recommended weight


Finally, if your child has started to complain about back, neck or shoulder pain as a result of

wearing their backpack it would be advised to book an assessment with one of our practitioners

to help resolve the aches and pains quickly allowing them to just keep being a kid!

Dr. Livia Chiarelli

Doctor of Chiropractic

Please direct any questions about the article or any chiropractor questions to

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