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How to Choose the Right Backpack for Your Child

Is your student going to need a new backpack for school? Tutor Doctor has some great tips on how to choose the right backpack for your child!

1. Comfort. Students will find themselves walking around school throughout the day, so it’s important to invest in a backpack that feels comfortable to wear for extended periods. Here’s a few things to look out for:

  • Wide and padded shoulder straps are ideal for distributing the weight of the backpack comfortably on the wearer’s shoulders. Although narrow straps may be lower profile, they can dig into your child’s shoulders while carrying a full load.
  • Lightweight and breathable materials are best. The bag itself shouldn’t add too much weight. Although leather bags might look sleek, a lightweight and durable material like canvas is a much better option for students.
  • Padding and back support. A well-made backpack should have ample padding on the back area. Not only does this provide comfort for the wearer, but it also prevents any sharp objects from pushing through the material.
  • A waist clip/belt is a common feature on many backpacks. Waist clips also help to evenly distribute weight across the body, which helps to prevent repeated strain on specific areas.

2. Storage. Make sure the backpack has enough compartments to meet your child’s storage needs. For younger students, a single zipper compartment may be adequate. Older students may prefer a backpack with multiple storage areas, separators, and zipper compartments. Having the right backpack for your student’s academic needs is an excellent way to help keep class materials organized.

3. Style. Backpacks can be a great way to show individuality! Depending on the school’s dress code, students often have a wide variety of styles and colors to choose from. Many students even personalize their backpacks with fabric markers, iron-on patches, or button pins! This also makes your backpack stand out – easy to spot, and helpful for avoiding mix ups at school!

Tutor Doctor’s Expert Tips!

Doctors recommend that kids do not carry more than 10-15% of their body weight in a backpack. Here’s a few tips to help follow these guidelines:

  • Use both shoulder straps. Although it can seem comfortable to wear a backpack over one side, this puts uneven strain on the load-bearing shoulder at any given time. By wearing both straps, the weight will be easier to manage and won’t pinpoint specific muscle groups.
  • Tighten the straps. Some students like to wear their backpacks sagging down, but this causes unnecessary stress on the lower back and other muscles. Tighten the straps to ensure the fit is snug. Ideally, your child’s backpack should sit close to the body, resting evenly in the middle of the back.
  • Pack light! Encourage your child to pack only what they need. Students may find themselves attending different classes on certain days, so there’s no need to bring extra materials that won’t be used during the school day. We always recommend packing the night before to plan out and prepare your bag for the next day.

Choosing the Right Backpack for Your Child