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Laboring Under Heavy Loads

The American Physical Therapy Association reminds parents that their children’s backpacks can pose a health threat when they are overloaded with books and supplies.

Under these heavy loads, school children are at increased risk for musculoskeletal injuries. As children arch their backs, bend forward, twist, and/or lean to one side, they are more likely to suffer injuries. These faulty postures can lead to improper spinal alignment, which hampers the functioning of shock-absorbing spinal discs. Moreover, impingements of the nerves exiting the spine may occur, which can lead to pain, numbness/tingling, and even muscle weakness. To avert these problems, backpack weight should be pared down, and both straps should be used to distribute the load equally.

Parents, keep today’s article in mind especially if your child has been complaining of a sore back. At our facility we provide physical therapy for all ages, including pediatric and geriatric cases. Our services range from orthopedic/posture/neurological disorders, post-surgical conditions, and more. Call 949-429-3220 to learn more. We are located at 27136B Paseo Espada, Suite 1103, San Juan Capistrano. Inquire about our ergonomically-designed backpacks for children and adults.

P.S. A child’s backpack weight should be limited to 10%-15% of the child’s weight, and the backpack should not extend below the lower back.