Why is it important?
- Kids wear backpacks every school day. So the loads it puts on them can influence their posture and development.
- Wearing a bad backpack or wearing it incorrectly puts excess stress on the spine as well as their shoulders and knees.
- The compressive loads from bad backpacks on the spine or unevenly distributed loads can leave kids susceptible to back and shoulder pain, neck pain, headaches, and subluxation. A subluxation is a misalignment in the spine that causes dysfunction in the nerve that exits the spine and then causes dysfunction in the body. (click here to learn more about subluxation)
- Backpacks can Distort the curvatures in the lower and mid back creating strain to the spinal joints and ribs. It can also cause rounding of the shoulders due to this stress.
- Kids are more susceptible to these issues since they are growing quickly and the body compensates for the loads that are put onto it.
Picking Right and Wearing Right
- Wide padded shoulder distribute the weight more evenly over the shoulders
- A waist strap helps distribute the weight between each side and keeps the backpack from swinging around and injuring the back.
- A backpack should be worn over both shoulders so that one side of the body isn't taking all the weight of the bag.
- It should be loaded at 10-15% of the child's body weight. Heres an easy calculation _____(weight with backpack on) -____ (minus weight without backpack=_____/_____x100=______% (calculated weight of bag over childs weight without bag times 100 to get percentage)
- Load heavy items closest to the child's back. Heavy items further from the center of gravity will create a larger load on the spine.
- Multple compartments are useful for organization and getting good weight distribution
How can Chiropractic help?
- Bad backpacks can lead the spine susceptible to injury and subluxations as mentioned above and chiropractors work to remove these subluxations and take pressure off of the nerves that exit the spine.
- By doing this the body can heal itself properly and the excess strain on the joints in the spine called the discs is removed.
- Chiropractic care has proven both in research and in this office to help in several conditions and improve overall health of kids under care!
- For more information on chiropractic care for kids click here!
Check out our backpack safety brochure