Heavy School Bags and Children’s Backs

It’s back to school for most children this week, so just a quick reminder about the hazards associated with carrying heavy school bags, sports bags and musical instruments.

Children’s skeletons are still growing making their backs vulnerable to potential damage when carrying heavy bags. This damage may be immediately apparent in the form of neck, shoulder or back pain and stiffness. Or it is possible that damage may occur which may not become apparent until later in life.


Consider these tips to avoid problems and to make sure that your children are ‘back aware’:

  • Pack bags only with what they need for the day.
  • Encourage children to place items in lockers at school, if they are available, rather than carrying them around all day.
  • Provide them with backpacks with straps that can be worn on both shoulders to spread the weight. Ensure the straps are padded and adjustable and that the bag is carried on both shoulders and not slung over one side.
  • If they insist on using a shoulder bag, encourage them to switch sides often to avoid muscle strains and twists through the spine.
  • Make children aware, from an early age, to bend at the knees rather than at the waist when lifting a heavy object.

Should you have any concerns about your child’s musculoskeletal health or have any questions about the information here then please contact any of our osteopaths on:020 89773592