Here are a few tips on how to use your backpack correctly to avoid unnecessary strain on your spine.
Use a pack with well padded straps and back. Wear both straps when wearing the pack.
Arrange the contents inside from largest to smallest so there are no small items pushing into the back.
The total weight of the pack should be no more then 10-15% of the child's body weight. For example, a 20lb child should not exceed 12-18lbs.
If the pack is causing the student to lean forward, it is too heavy. Proper posture should be maintained without stress or pain.
The weight of the pack should not rest on the low back or hips. Tighten the straps so the weight is close to the body. If the pack moves and swings against the body when walking, the straps are too loose.
Here are a few tips for proper studying posture.
When Using a Computer: the top of the computer screen should be eye level. The screen should be directly in front of you and you should be comfortable.
When Reading: The material should be placed high enough for the neck to be maintained in as neutral position as possible. If there is neck pain with reading, try using a stand such as an EZ-Reader or a music stand when reading for more than on hour. Adjust the stand so the top of the page is eye level.
When Studying for More than 1 Hour: get up and stretch for 10 minutes, every hours
When Sitting in Class: sit all the way back in the seat to avoid slouching. Think of a string being attached to the top of the chest and pulling straight up to the ceiling. Moving the chest upward will place the shoulders and head in the correct position and minimize unnecessary stress on the spine.
When schedules get busy, food choices can suffer. Here are a few quick tips to help avoid some struggles caused by poor nutrition choices.
Eat Breakfast. Even a smaller bar on the go will make a world of difference in energy throughout the day. It will also help you not crave poor food choices later in the day.
Drink Water and Milk Instead of Sugary Drinks. There are more opportunities for poor drink choices during the school day. Know that drinking sugary drinks now may give you the boost you are looking for, but it will create a "crash" later in the day.
Small, healthy snacks throughout the day will help you keep your focus for the afternoon classes.