Back-to-School Backpack Safety

How much do you know about your child’s backpack?

kids-back-to-schoolAccording to pediatric physical therapist Amanda Trail, PT, a backpack that fits improperly or is too heavy can cause children to alter their postures. This can lead to back, neck, or shoulder pain, muscle strain, tingling, and numbness or weakness in the arms and hands.

Answer the questions below to find out:

  1. Key components of a “safe pack” include:
    a. Wide and padded shoulder straps
    b. Lightweight design to avoid adding additional weight to the load
    c. Quality construction
    d. All of the above
  2. When full, the backpack shouldn’t be more than _____% of your child’s total body weight.
    a. 5 to 10
    b. 10 to 20
    c. 30 to 40
    d. 50
  3. Heaviest items should be located where?
    a. In the front of the backpack
    b. At the bottom of the backpack
    c. Closest to the child’s back
    d. At the top of the backpack
  4. The backpack should fit snugly on your child’s back and be positioned:
    a. In the middle of the back
    b. Below the waist
    c. Two inches above the waist
    d. On one shoulder



Answers: 1. D, 2. B, 3. C, 4. C

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