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5 Tips for Choosing the Right School Bag

Heavy school bags are one of the main causes of back, neck and shoulder pain in children.
We've all despaired at seeing a child lugging a bag that seems almost bigger than them around. Chartered physiotherapist Aoibhin McGreal lets us in on her five top tips to help reduce this problem.

 

1. Purchase a bag with two shoulder straps

 

Ensure that the bag has two wide, padded, adjustable shoulder straps and, if possible, a waist strap too. Bags with one shoulder strap are bad news for your child's developing bones and could cause curvature of the spine (scoliosis) in some cases. READ ALSO: 8 Thoughts all moms have the first day of school

 

2. Check the posture and the fit

 

If the bag is too heavy or if the straps are not properly adjusted, your child may lean forward to counteract the weight. Make sure to adjust the shoulder straps so that the bag sits between the shoulders and the middle of the back. If it hangs down at the small of the back it will put increased stress on the spine an surrounding muscles.

 

3. Only carry what you need

 

Ensure that your child only carries the textbooks that are essential for that day. Don't carry full water bottles if there is a drinking water tap in school. Try to reduce lugging around any unnecessary items. READ ALSO: 10 Reasons going to school in 2015 is better than in the 1980s

 

4. Pack the bag correctly

 

This may surprise you but how a bag is packed will make a big difference to the strain it places on the back muscles. Pack the heaviest items closest to your child's back and the lightest furthest away.

 

5. The 10% Rule

 

The weight of the school bag (including books, water bottles etc) should not exceed 10-15% of your child's weight. Get the weighing scales out! Love this? Share, share, share! Check us out on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and our brand new Snapchat is eumom_ie
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