School is almost in session, and many parents are stocking up on supplies for the new year. One of the items on the list is likely a backpack, which is more than just a storage unit or fashion statement. Backpacks must be thoughtfully chosen to keep your kid’s spine in good health throughout the school year. Follow these dos and don’ts of picking a pack to get the new school year off to a good start.

Consider the Fit

Your child’s backpack should not fall more than four inches below their waist. When backpacks hang too low, they can lead to poor posture because your child will start to learn forward in an effort to balance the weight.

Look for Padding

Straps that are too thin can dig into your kid’s shoulders. Look for nice thick padded straps that are also adjustable to avoid shoulder and back pain.

Go for Compartments

Compartments for everything from pens to books help your child spread the weight of the pack out more easily and evenly. Keep the heaviest items closest to the body, and stow away lighter, smaller objects in the outer compartments.

Backpack Tips for Spinal Health

After picking the best backpack for your child, talk your kid about best practices to keep spinal health in good order.

Don’t Overpack

Your child’s backpack shouldn’t weigh more than about 10% of their own body weight. Too-heavy backpacks are a frequent cause of poor posture and back, neck and shoulder pain.

Use Both Straps

While some students still feel wearing a backpack with just one strap is cool, using both straps can reduce the potential for back pain, avoid muscle spasms and keep weight distribution more even.

Following these tips can reduce the risk of back pain and prevent poor posture, but if your child is experiencing discomfort or spasms, make an appointment at Forgey Chiropractic today!

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