Will carrying a heavy backpack to school cause health problems for your kids? It might if they are carrying more than 15% of their body weight in their backpack, especially if they have to walk to school and/or they are carrying their backpack on only one shoulder.
The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons developed these recommended backpack weight limits based on a child’s body weight:
Child’s weight in pounds Maximum backpack weight in pounds
Up to 60 5
Greg King, Mercy Clinic orthopedic nurse practitioner, encourages parents and students to “devote attention to building not only a healthy mind this school year, but a healthy spine too.” He recommends these additional tips for safe and comfortable backpacks: