Heavy School Bags and How to Lighten the Load.

Are you dealing with a heavy school bag?

With students required to carry sports gear, musical instruments, textbooks, laptops, stationery, writing books, food, and drink to and from school, heavy school backpacks are sometimes an inevitable consequence of day-to-day school life.

Why should we be concerned about the weight of kids backpacks?

Wearing a heavy backpack every day (especially if worn incorrectly) can have the potential to create long term issues such as poor posture, muscle weakness and pain, spinal compression, nerve damage and back pain. Unfortunately, many of these issues may take a long time to show up, so it is something we need to address.

It can be tricky to take the day-to-day school backpack load off their backs, yet still make sure they have everything they need for the day.  

Here are our practical tips to make their school bag lighter:

Check the backpack load weight. Children shouldn’t be carrying more than 10 – 15% of their body weight in their backpack. Consider using additional bags to carry items which make the backpack over the recommended backpack weight or carrying items by hand.

Reduce the bag clutter. Every week clean out the school bags to remove rubbish and all the unnecessary things children collect or the toys and knickknacks the want to take to school and share with their friends and teachers.

Carry only what is required. Double check if they need to carry everything in the bag and make sure items which aren’t required that day are left at home. Encourage the use of smaller folders or exercise books where possible rather than carrying large heavy binders.

Ensure good weight distribution. Pack the bag so the heaviest items in the bag are closest to their back so the weight is focused on their shoulders and not their spine. Although it isn’t cool, encourage them to wear both shoulder straps.

Get a backpack with multiple compartments. Backpacks like our large school backpack with three separate compartments will enable easier organisation of their belongings and a better distribution of the load.

Get a backpack with wide padded straps. Backpacks with tight and narrow straps can dig into their shoulders and interfere with nerves and circulation. All Alimasy large school backpacks and midsize backpacks have wide padded adjustable shoulder straps.

Get a backpack with a padded back cushion. An ergonomic designed padded back cushion will provide good posture and support the gap between the backpacks and their spine. All Alimasy large school backpacks and midsize backpacks have ergonomic padded back cushions.

Carry extras separately by hand or in another bag. Encourage them to carry their musical instruments, sports gear, or heavy lunch bags in a separate bag or by hand rather than adding excessive weight to their backpack.

Check out online resources. If they are using a digital device or laptop at school, explore if any online resources are available rather than carrying heavy textbooks back and forth to school.

Bring half full water bottles. If they can fill their water bottles at school from a filter, tap or bubbler they only need to carry what they need for the start of the day rather than carrying a full water bottle.

Condense stationery and personal supplies. Manage the amount of stationery and personal items carried is only the necessary. A spare pen or pencil is great to have on hand, however they don’t need 6 spare pens or pencils!

Use available storage. If there are school lockers, trays, or personal desk space available to store heavy and bulky items, encourage these to be used.