Apparently, studies show that overweight loads in kids' backpacks could potentially lead to injury and even long-term pain. Therefore, it is important to remember to keep the backpack as light as possible and to wear it properly. Otherwise you'll be increasing your child's risk of being one of the 14,000 children treated for backpack injuries each year.
According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, backpacks can seriously cause health issues if contents weigh more than 10 to 15% of a child's body weight.
Jane Brody of The New York Times even wrote, "Heavy backpacks don't just sap children of energy that might be better used doing schoolwork or playing sports. Lugging them can also lead to chronic back pain, accidents and possible lifelong orthopedic damage."
Dr. Scott Seidel, a San Antonio chiropractor, said that it should be a consideration for parents when they're picking backpacks for their kids. There are short-term and long-term problems caused by overweight loads on children, according to him, and he's seen them personally.
"You have a backpack that's too heavy, you can risk neck injuries, shoulder injuries, upper back injuries and other soft tissue injuries," Seidel said. "They could be slouching forward and bending their shoulders trying to carry a backpack pulling down on the back."
He said, it is important to choose the right package and use properly.
That's why the load limit on your back shouldn't exceed 15% of its weight, according to Seidel. Which means for a 50 pound child, 7 1/2 lbs should be the limit; while 100 pound child shouldn't carry more than 15 lbs.
To balance the weight, Seidel also suggested that it's wiser to carry the backpack if it's heavy in the front rathr than the back.