When you pick up your kids from school, you probably noticed how heavy their bags are. Even when you take them out to choose their bags before the upcoming term, their weight and capacity must be considered. It might be easy to give them a “back in my day” story and end the conversation, but why do children have to bring so many books?
Unless you have a freaky Friday situation, you will never truly know how substantial is the weight of a school bag. Your children put it on or roll it out every single weekday. The toll it takes on their growing bodies should not be dismissed, as it poses potential health issues.
Weight on Their Shoulders
In 13 studies, children were reported to carry between 5 and 7 kilograms of books and other school-related items every single day. Even though trained adults in the military or police force have to carry between 20 and 45 kilograms of equipment, almost all children do not undergo specific training to reduce the vulnerability of their spines to injury. They also weigh a lot less compared to an adult. On average, it was reported that kids carry 15% of their weight—a percentage that is over the recommended 10% of their weight.
As a result, children experience back injuries and muscle sores, among other ailments that a heavy bag can cause. They carry these weights early in the morning and have to handle them throughout the day until it is time to go home. For roughly 7 hours, your kids’ bones and muscles have to go through premature wear and tear. It is no easy feat to be physically drained and attend school at the same time. Moreover, once they get home, they need to hit the books again. Homework takes hours for some students, and these hours become more extensive as they get older.
Twelve Years of Carrying Books
Children are subjected to over a decade of carrying books for every single schoolday until they graduate. Sure, you might have gone through the same thing. But considering how much more information is known, has to be taught, and has to be learned today, it is a reasonable concern that the weight of textbooks must have increased over time. Aside from taking up a substantial portion of the budget for your child’s education, they are also a physical burden for them.
Yes, education is essential. However, as a parent, you are more probably concerned about their health. Think about the impact of poor posture on your child’s decision-making skills. Researchers from Harvard and Columbia have found that there is a direct correlation between the initiative of a person and their posture. A simple aspect of body language could determine the future of your child. Could the bags be weighing them down?
Imagine being a student on your way to class. Or even someone who has to take the stairs to their office with a 5 to 7-kilogram weight on their back. If you need to bring a laptop for an additional task, think about adding at least 4 kilograms to the weight. When a working adult finds it difficult to do so, children might benefit from a reduced weight on their backs.
Forbearing a Bright Future
The weight of a heavy backpack takes a toll on more than just your child’s day-to-day mental and physical strength. The spinal vulnerabilities mentioned earlier make them more susceptible to injury and sensitivity on their back. If you are currently experiencing something similar or you feel like your kid is prone to issues because of your experiences with backpacks, it makes sense to look into lower back braces to help.
Beyond helping you and your family maintain good posture without invasive or chemical treatments, using support for your spine can relieve the immense pain created from the stresses of heavy books on the children as well as your resulting back pain from when you had to carry those hefty book bags. With posture being linked to how driven a person can be, it is an investment you and your family can afford. Your overall well-being might even improve with better posture as your outlook changes.
Whether you pack their bags for them or not, it is difficult to change the weight kids carry to and from school. Unless tablets are used more frequently for learning or textbooks are only used inside the classroom, children will have these issues for many years to come. You needed support to carry those books when you were younger, and now your children need it even more.