Fall is upon us and the kids are heading back to school which means backpacks loaded with books, supplies, food and other fun stuff! In addition to our children many of us use backpacks in our daily jobs to carry paperwork, laptops and other needs. Heavy backpacks can cause a variety of issues included but not limited to neck and back pain/strain, shoulder pain, inflamed tendons from lifting and “swinging” it upon your shoulder, and nerve pain and tingling sensations in your arms from small straps pulling down on your shoulders causing nerve compression. What can we do to address these issues?
•Select ergonomic designs that fit comfortably on your body type
•Select backpacks with padded shoulder straps and back pads
•Use both straps to have an even weight distribution across shoulders and back; utilizing one side only can increase the opportunity for injury
•Multiple departments to help distribute weight
•Chest or hip straps may be beneficial to keep the backpack snug against your body
•Lighten the load; if you think you may not need/use the item then leave it at home
•Consider rolling backpacks or rolling bags as an option.