Protecting the Back from Backpacks
By Brandi Swieter
Backpacks get used the most by students, but others carry them around as well for an easy way to carry items without having a large "purse" over the shoulder. Even some diaper bags have been created in backpack form. Though this version may be easier on the body than an over-the-shoulder bag, there are still some worries that come with using them. It’s important for people to protect their backs from backpacks by following a few helpful tips.
Carry the Bag High
A bag that hangs low on the body is going to tug on the shoulders and put unnecessary tension in the upper back. It’s better to carry the backpack high on the back so it sits in the proper spot and does not hang and tug. The weight should be more toward the center of the back so it is carried evenly and not putting stress on either the lower or upper portion of the spine.
Wear Both Shoulder Straps
The point of a backpack over a bag is that it has two straps. One strap goes over each shoulder, dispersing the weight and keeping things even. Wearing just one backpack shoulder strap would cause all of the weight to fall to one side and would completely defeat the purpose of this bag style. Always use both straps and have them tightened and fitting well on the body for the safest carrying.
Carry Fewer Items
Too many people overstuff their backpacks with school supplies or baby essentials. It’s important that individuals start carrying fewer items in their bags so they do not have an overabundance of weight placed on their back and shoulders. Too much weight can quickly cause tension and pain. Carrying less will limit the chance for pain and ensure people are able to handle their backpacks without discomfort setting in.
Take the Backpack Off When Sitting
No one should ever sit with their backpack still on. It can lead to poor posture and place unnecessary weight on the spine. Whether a person is sitting at their desk, on a bus, or anywhere else, the backpack should come off the shoulders and be placed on the lap, at the feet, or in the next seat to ease the tension.
Backpacks come in handy for a variety of options, but they can also hurt the back if people aren’t careful. Anyone who still experiences some tension in their back, neck, or shoulders after carrying a backpack around can visit The Joint Chiropractic to have an assessment. Stop by after class or before taking baby out to see about relieving joint restrictions.
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Snellville, Ga.