School backpacks are too heavy

Jailan Cerecedo, Staff Writer

Imagine walking around school all day carrying a backpack that weighs twenty pounds. Your back starts hurting and you can hardly walk due to the pain. It hurts so bad, you have to go to a doctor. He tells you that you have back issues because of your heavy backpack.

Many students have been in this situation. A heavy backpack should not be the reason for a back injury.

“This backpack weighs a ton” is a phrase spreading through the hallways in schools all across the United States. The luggage that children carry ranges from pencils and paper to a surplus amount of books and binders.

According to the Washington Post, backpacks should weigh anywhere from 9 to 15 pounds. A backpack should never weigh more than 10% of a student’s weight. A 70 pound student should not carry a backpack heavier than 7 pounds.

Instead, they carry much heavier weights. According to the website “Kids Health,” this can cause a spine to compress unnaturally. People who carry heavy backpacks sometimes lean forward. Over time, this can cause the shoulders to become rounded and the upper back to become curved. Students wearing their backpacks the wrong way can also develop bad posture. The straps on backpacks can even cause interference with circulation and nerves.

Students can develop back problems because backpacks are too heavy due to the books, computers, binders and personal items they have to carry around. There is not enough time to stop by lockers and make it to the next class on time.

According to the Kingsport Times-News, at least 14,000 children each year are treated for back, knee, and even shoulder-related injuries because of backpacks. That’s almost 80 kids every day.

There are ways to prevent these problem. Students can limit talking in the halls so they can go to their lockers and to class. They can also carry their backpacks correctly, and take the stuff they don’t really need out of their backpacks.

Students should always use both straps; that way, the weight is distributed evenly. They also need to use correct lifting techniques, because lifting a backpack the wrong way could lead to a back injury. Heavier items should always be in the closest compartment to the back. That keeps the weight even.

Finally, schools should allow more time in between classes for locker breaks, so that students can put unused items in their lockers. By doing this, they could keep student from having these issues.

Students are too young to have a back injury, especially if it is caused by a backpack weighing more than it should.

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