Fitness Friday – Back to School Backpack Tips!
Sending yourself or the kids back to school means loading up backpacks with all the essentials, books, pens, binders, lunches PLUS everything they begged for, or you begged yourself for, like the coolest new gel pens. (Okay, we don’t know if they’re still cool, but they were when we were kids!) Lugging that all around five days a week is very taxing on our poor spines. That being said, San Luis Sports Therapy Paso Robles wants to help you prepare for back to school in the best way we can, by providing you some tips on how to prevent injury, either immediate or long term, from all those evil text books weighing you down!
(Not carrying around a backpack but still want to make sure your spine is healthy? Click HERE for tips!)
Lets start with some tips on how to properly wear and load up your backpack:
1. Make sure the straps are on BOTH shoulders.
2. Straps should be a nice wide width to help distribute the weight.
3. The backpack should not weigh more than 15% of your body weight.
4. Load the backpack as lightly as possible.
5. Load heavy items first and closest to your body.
Here is a chart to help you determine the ideal weight of your backpack:
|Weight||Backpack should weigh LESS than||IDEAL weight of the backpack|
|40 lbs.||6 lbs.||4 lbs.|
|50 lbs.||7 1/2 lbs.||5 lbs.|
|60 lbs.||9 lbs.||6 lbs.|
|70 lbs.||10 1/2 lbs.||7 lbs.|
|80 lbs||12 lbs.||8 lbs.|
|90 lbs.||13 1/2 lbs.||9 lbs.|
|100 lbs.||15 lbs.||10 lbs.|
|110 lbs.||16 1/2 lbs.||11 lbs.|
|120 lbs.||18 lbs.||12 lbs.|
|Weight||Backpack should weigh LESS than||IDEAL weight of the Backpack|
|130 lbs.||19 1/2 lbs.||13 lbs.|
|140 lbs.||21 lbs.||14 lbs.|
|150 lbs.||22 1/2 lbs.||15 lbs.|
Backpack Injury Information:
- 30%-50% of children ages 15-60 suffer from back pain caused by backpacks being worn incorrectly or loaded too heavy.
- Overloaded backpacks can cause changes in posture, neck, shoulder and back pain and numbness or tingling in the arms or legs.
- Improper straps, causing red marks about the shoulder and other contact points can also lead to strain on the back and shoulders.
How to prevent overweight backpack pain or injuries:
- Using an alternative to backpacks being carried on the back, such as those on rollers.
- Backpacks should weigh no more than 15% of your body weight.
- Place heavy items into the backpack first, putting them closest to your body.
- Use both shoulder straps to reduce potential pain and injury.
- Stretching three minutes, twice a day, such as in the morning and evening, can alleviate back pain.
How Physical Therapists can help:
- Physical therapists are experts in body movement and performance and can evaluate and asses a child’s condition and create a treatment plan when a child suffers from back pain caused by an overweight back pack.
- As highly trained professionals, the physical therapist can help restore function and relieve pain.
- Physical Therapist can work with the child and family to determine the best physical activities, exercises and other treatments to increase the child’s strength and endurance to get back to school and daily activities free from back, shoulder and/or neck pain.
Not carrying around a backpack but still want to make sure your spine is healthy? Click HERE for tips!
Read more information about Fitness Friday…..
San Luis Sports Therapy- Paso Robles
1345 Park St
Paso Robles, CA 93446