How to carry a school back pack?

  1. Backpacks should ideally not be heavier than 10% of a persons weight once packed.

  2. The backpack should be sturdy and correctly sized - no wider than the student's chest.

  3. Your backpack should feel comfortable and fit well.

  4. Ideally choose a backpack with broad, padded shoulder straps to distribute load.

  5. Use both shoulder straps - never sling the pack over one shoulder.

  6. Use waist straps attached - they are there for a good reason and you will see why!

  7. Don't wear the backpack any lower than the dip in your lower back.

  8. Don't overload the backpack - use school lockers and plan homework well in advance

  9. Place all heavy items at the base of the pack, close to the spine, for a better distribution of the weight

  10. It's not just about looking good, but feeling good. Your spinal health is important every day of your life.


       Download and print our Back Pack Fact Sheet to help minimise back pain associated with wearing back packs.

10 Tips for Children to Carry a School Backpack

1. Negrini, S., & Carabalona, R (2002). Backpacks on! Schoolchildren's Perceptions of Load, Associations with Back Pain and Factors Determining the Load. Spine, 27(2), 187-195.

2. Australian Bureau of Statistics. (2004-2005). National Health Survey: Summary of Results. (No. 4364.0). Canberra, Australian Capital Territory.

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