Carrying a backpack which is too heavy can be really bad for a child’s back. In fact, heavy backpacks are even known to cause chronic back pain both temporarily and permanently. This is especially true for younger children. Unfortunately, with the high amount of homework that students seem to get, the books just seem to drag their backpacks down. Luckily, there are a number of different things that you can do in order to help make your child’s backpack lighter.
1. Make Sure the Backpack is Adjusted the Right Way
When your child’s backpack does not fit right, everything is going to seem even heavier than it really is. This is the main reason that it is so important to make sure that it fits your child just right. A general rule of thumb for fitting backpacks is this: higher is always better. When your child’s backpack hangs a bit lower than it should, it can not only feel very uncomfortable, but it can also feel heavier than it normally would. Making sure that the straps fit your child just right is also very important. You don’t want your child to feel any tight tugging when books weigh down his or her backpack! Overall, it is definitely safe to say that making sure your child’s backpack is adjusted the right way is the first main key to making your child’s backpack lighter.
2. Choose the Right Type of Backpack For Your Child
Backpacks which offer only one shoulder strap and tote bags are becoming a very popular trend nowadays – even for younger children. Choosing a traditional backpack that has two straps for your child to wear is the best way to go. Although the trendy backpacks may look appealing, they will not really be comfortable for your child to wear. Backpacks which only offer one strap put too much of the weight on only one shoulder which is the main reason that many children who use them complain of back pain mainly on one side. Choosing the right type of backpack for your child is a very important key to reducing the amount of pain that your child may experience.
3. Know How to Load the Backpack to Make it Lighter
Balancing out where everything is located in your child’s backpack will ultimately make it lighter. This is the main reason that it is important to make sure that you know how to load a backpack. The main key is to always remember this simple rule of thumb: Larger objects should go in larger compartments. If the backpack does not have compartments, it is a good idea to load everything from largest, closest to the back, to smallest. Think of loading books or other objects into a backpack the same way that you would think of layering – big things go in first, smaller things go in last. Smallest objects, such as pencils and erasers, should be kept in a material pencil case in the front compartment of your child’s backpack. This should help provide the most balance to your child’s backpack, and ultimately reduce the amount of pain that your child experiences due to a heavy backpack.
4. Try to Eliminate as Much as You Can From the Backpack
It is a good idea to try to eliminate as much as you possibly can from your child’s backpack. Obviously, the reason is because this will reduce the amount of weight that your child has to carry on his or her back. There are some instances when you may not be able to completely eliminate something from your child’s backpack, but your child may be able to carry it in his or her hand in order to reduce the amount of weight that is put on the back through the backpack. One example of something that you may want to let your child carry, instead of stuffing in a backpack, is a lunchbox. Doing as much as you can to reduce the amount that your child has to carry in his or her backpack will ultimately reduce the amount of pain that your child will experience.
5. Consider a Backpack With Wheels
Although the idea of purchasing your child a backpack with wheels may sound a bit ridiculous, it may be necessary. This is probably the option that you will want to consider as a last resort in order to lighten your child’s backpack. While many recommend you to try to negotiate with teachers on your child’s book load, the truth in the matter is that many teachers are not willing to compromise. Wheeling backpack into class, rather than having to carry on the back, will be sure to reduce the amount of pain that your child experiences.