How Do I Choose the Right Backpack for My Child?

Backpacks have become common place for all students from kindergarten to graduate school.  To keep your student pain free and avoid injury, please follow the tips below:

  • In choosing a backpack make sure to find the appropriate size for your student which also  has 2 wide shoulder straps with padding as well as a waist strap.  A padded back section can also be helpful
  • The backpack should be as light weight as possible, not adding any significant weight to the load they are carrying.  Rolling backpacks are also available but are sometimes problematic in crowded hallways.
  • Pack as lightly as possible.  The backpack should never weigh more than 10 to 20 percent of the students total body weight.
  • Pack ergonomically with the largest books or laptop closest to the body with smaller, lighter items on top.  Use top compartments for pencils, pens and small items.
  • Always use both shoulder straps and the waist strap.
  • If a locker is available for your student, encourage them to stop in and switch book loads as frequently as possible.
  • Keep an eye on your child's posture.  If you see them slouching or complaining of back pain it might be time for a spinal examination by at Northwest Wellness in Federal Way for postural advice, strengthening exercises or a spinal adjustment.