Backpack 101: Back-To-School Backpack Tips

Is your backpack dangerous? Tips to be comfortable AND safe!

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Overloaded or poor-fitting backpacks can totally strain your back, accidentally hurt you, and give you bad posture. When planning your carry-all friend for this school year, keep these Backpack 101 tips in mind:

Your body weight matters! Your load should only be about 10% of your total body weight; for example, if you weigh 90 pounds, your backpack should only be about 9 pounds. Use all of the pockets and compartments to spread the weight evenly. Backpack shopping tip: Be sure your backpack isn’t too big for you or you may be tempted to overfill it!

Even up the weight on your shoulder! Always use both straps at once (the larger the shoulder strap, the better), instead of packing everything on one shoulder! Carrying a heavy load unbalanced on your body can contribute to falls or back pain.

Adjust the straps! Make such that your backpack rests 2 inches about your waist. The straps shouldn’t hold your arms from freely moving, but also shouldn’t be so loose that it easily falls off of you.

No more poor posture! Don’t arch your back, bend all the way forward, twist your torso suddenly, or lean to one side for a long period of time while you have your backpack on.Backpack girl

Bending is better! When you’re taking off your backpack, always bend your knees and crouch to unload your books. Never bend at the waist to unload – it’s bad for your back and hips!

Backpack Forget-Me-Nots:

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Reminder: don’t forget to occasionally CLEAN OUT YOUR BACKPACK. Uneaten snacks (gross!), extra papers, and random “stuff” can accumulate over time. Use a free Saturday afternoon once a month to purge anything that’s not necessary to lighten your load and keep your carry-all buddy fresh!

For more back-to-school tips, read:


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  1. Pingback: A Fun Back to School Poem

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