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Large load for small backs

Books, exercise books, writing utensils, gym bags, water bottles and sandwiches: even first graders have to carry around on their backs every day. The German Spine Society (DWG) warns that unsuitable and too heavy schoolbags can cause back pain and postural problems. To avoid this, parents should pay attention to the right choice, weight and carrying comfort of the school bag.

Just in time for the start of school you see children groaning under the weight of their school bag. A forward or backward bent upper body is a sure sign that the satchel is too heavy, according to the DWG. As a rule of thumb, the packed bag should not exceed 15 percent of the child's body weight. A school bag that is too heavy can put a lot of strain on children's spine. Intervertebral discs are pushed together and are thus limited in their function as shock absorbers for the body. The consequence: tensions in the neck and neck area often lead to muscle and headaches.

Correct carrying and packing of school satchels

Whether the schoolbag leads to back problems or in extreme cases even to poor posture does not only depend on the weight. Thus, the DWG warns that permanent wrong or one-sided wearing can put a great strain on the spine. Both the classic knapsack and the rucksack should therefore sit centrally on the back and end at the top with the shoulders. If the risers are set too short, this promotes a hunched back, if they are too long, the posture tends towards a hollow back. Wide, padded and continuously adjustable straps are also better because they distribute the weight well, is another recommendation.
Experts strongly advise against pockets hanging over the shoulder on one side. The reason: Due to the one-sided load the body automatically adopts a balancing posture. Incorrect loads are pre-programmed. In order to relieve the back of the child, the satchel must also be properly packed, emphasizes the DWG. Heavy books should be placed in the knapsack as close to the spine as possible and lighter objects on the edge or in front.

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