As you head back to school, your teachers will be giving you heavy textbooks. Add binders that get heavier all year and the fact that you’ll often carry them in a backpack, and you have given your back a Herculean task. It is easy to damage your back without realizing it at first. Additionally, it’s easy to develop a leaning-forward posture with rounded shoulders, which is not good for your back. However, if you handle your bursting-at-the-seams backpack correctly, you can avoid unnecessary pain and stiffness.
- Make sure your backpack has two padded straps – the wider, the better. Messenger bags are cute, but they will do an ugly number on your body. You need a backpack that will distribute the weight evenly over your shoulders.
- Wear your backpack close to your back, and never over just one shoulder. Don’t let it hang way down – if it hits your lower back or butt when you walk, it’s too long. Put the heaviest items closest to your back, and make sure the weight is distributed evenly side-to-side. Carry some of your heavy books in your hands.
- Use your locker. Don’t pack up for the entire day if you can help it. We know that sometimes you get the locker way off in the band hall and don’t have time to get to it between classes, but do your best to keep your load light.
- Plan your homework and consider getting two sets of books. Don’t plan your week so you have to lug everything home every night. And for those massive books, try to get two copies so you can have one at school and one at home.
- Strengthen your core. Do exercises to strengthen your back and abdominal muscles. This strategy will go a long ways in protecting you from all injuries.
At Evansville Chiropractic, we know that your back can do amazing things. We also know there are limits! When you hit one, make an appointment and let us help you out. Call today!