How to Choose the Perfect Backpack

How often does your student complain about back pain? Or maybe how they can’t bring their books home because “they’re just too heavy.”  If these are conversations that are happening in your home, than this article is for you.  I want to talk about the proper way to size a backpack and the most important tips to wearing it properly.

When buying the appropriate sized backpack there’s a couple things you want to look for.  One is the WIDTH of the backpack.  The width should be no bigger than the width of the owner’s torso and the LENGTH of the pack should be no longer than 4 inches below the waist.  Ideally, the pack should land where the belt line is.  Keep in mind, wide shoulder straps will distribute the weight evenly over shoulders.  A few other things that are good to look for are padding down the sides of the back with a groove for the center of the spine in the middle.  Really good backpacks should come with straps for the chest (help hold the straps together so they don’t come off) and waist (for an extra load in the pack).

Next, let’s explore the 3 key factors in wearing a backpack properly.

  1. Use both straps
    • Using both straps allows the weight to be evenly distributed while allowing the wearer to have better posture.
    • One side is not compensating for the work both sides should be doing.
  2. Tighten the bottom straps when putting the back on, and loosen them when taking it off
    • Tightening the straps pulls the weight of the backpack towards the back
    • Loosening the straps before removing the bag allows an easier transition between on and off
  3. Put the weight of your backpack closest to your back at the bottom
    • This allows the pack to feel slightly lighter, rather than dragging more weight to the front.

Dr. Dawes would be happy to give those bags a once over if you are unsure if yours is the right fit.  Just bring it in at your next visit with Stones River Chiropractic.

Also, did you know we have a YouTube channel? You can find all kinds of videos with Dr. Dawes, including THIS ONE, which is all about choosing the perfect backpack.