Children's health: Get your kid on track with a cool backpack

School is nearly back in session! The air is filled with the smell of freshly sharpened pencils and the sound of rejoicing parents everywhere.

With the first day of class around the corner, it is important to make sure that your little Einstein has the backpack that’s best to get the school year off to a safe and healthy start.

First, as pediatricians, we recommend a backpack that has two wide padded shoulder straps. Narrow straps can dig into shoulders and cause pain or restrict blood flow and be uncomfortable. Thick padded straps help distribute the backpack weight evenly. This will help avoid back strain or injury. Backpacks with one strap that run across the body aren’t as good at evenly distributing the weight of books and other school supplies. If your school’s policies allow it, rolling backpacks are a great alternative to a traditional backpack, especially if your child often carries a heavy load to school most days. Keep in mind that a rolling backpack is not off terrain, so it should be carried up or down stairs.

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