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  • Julie Manley

Strong backs for heavy backpacks


With the return to school next week, kids are returning to carrying heavy backpacks. In order to support the weight of a backpack, it is important to have good posture and strong back, abdominal and hip muscles.

To strengthen back, abdominal and hip muscles encourage your child to increase their activity and encourage good posture.

  1. So if kids aren’t naturally motivated, how do you get kids to be active?

  • Choosing the right activities for the child’s age so they are not bored or frustrated

  • Giving kids plenty of opportunities to be active. Kids need their parents to take them to playgrounds and other active spots and provide them with equipment so that they can participate in activities.

  • Keeping all activities fun so that they want to do it for longer and more active.

When choosing activities, consider a child’s interests, personality, abilities and body type. Check here for more detail:

http://kidshealth.org/en/parents/schoolage-active.html#

2. How to improve your kids posture and strength of their postural muscles:

  • Get a good quality chair to support a good sitting posture and encourage your child using this chair and desk for their homework and computer time.

  • Decrease bad habits that encourage bad postures such as reading while lying down and using gadgets in a slouching position.

  • Set a reminder to check in on posture. Many of us need reminders about our posture in order to get used to holding yourself in a good position. So yes, nagging can help!

  • Practise good posture in front of a mirror

Good posture in standing:

-hold your head up and chin in

-put your shoulders down and back

-tuck in your tummy

Good posture in sitting:

-put your back against the backrest of the chair

-your knees should make a right angle

-feet flat on the floor

http://www.cyh.com/HealthTopics/HealthTopicDetailsKids.aspx?p=335&np=285&id=2505

Obviously, what type of backpack and how it is worn is very important to avoid back pain too. These links gives some great advice for choosing and wearing the backpack well:

http://www.bellefleurphysio.com/backpack/

http://www.workingmother.com/content/banish-book-bag-blues


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