The Physiotherapy Association recently wrote to schools with advice for parents in selecting school backpacks. The association advises that an overloaded or incorrectly worn backpack can cause shoulder, neck and back pain and become a major source of chronic pain.

Their recommendations for school aged children are:

  • The backpack should weigh no more than 10 per cent of a child’s body weight
  • Wide shoulder straps that are comfortable and sit well on the shoulder
  • Waist straps to help transfer some of the load
  • Padded back support that allows the backpack to fit snugly on the back.