Bad Backs and Backpacks

Bad Backs and Backpacks

Backpacks have become an indispensable part of our daily lives, especially for students and professionals who need to carry their essentials on the go. However, not many of us consider the potential impact backpacks may be having on our spinal health. In this blog post, we will explore the relationship between backpacks and back pain, and how you may be able to prevent pain and maintain good spinal health!

The Problem:

One of the primary factors contributing to back pain associated with backpacks is the weight they carry. John Triano, (chiropractor) notes that a heavy load carried in a backpack can lead to an imbalance in the body, making it more susceptible to falls and strains. This is particularly concerning for children, whose developing spines are more vulnerable to the effects of heavy backpacks. At Precision Health in Baulkham Hills, we are here to help!

The Importance of a Good Backpack:

Ergonomics (the process of designing or arranging workplaces, products and systems so that they fit the people who use them) plays a crucial role in mitigating the impact of backpacks on our backs. The Harvard Health Blog emphasises the importance of proper backpack design and usage to maintain spinal health. Backpacks that distribute weight evenly and have padded shoulder straps can significantly reduce the strain on the back. Additionally, the position of the backpack on the back, closer to the body, helps maintain a natural alignment of the spine.

Guidelines for Backpack Use:

To ensure a healthy relationship between backs and backpacks, it is essential to follow some guidelines:

1. Limit Weight: Avoid overloading your backpack. According to health experts, a backpack should not exceed 10-15% of the wearer’s body weight.

2. Proper Fit: Choose a backpack with adjustable straps to ensure a snug fit. Adjust the straps to position the backpack higher on the back, distributing the weight evenly.

3. Two-Strap Rule: While it may be tempting to sling a backpack over one shoulder, this can lead to uneven weight distribution and strain. Always use both shoulder straps to maintain balance.

4. Organise Smartly: Distribute the weight inside the backpack evenly. Place heavier items closer to the back to minimize the impact on spinal alignment.

What Does a Chiropractor Do?

Our chiropractors in Baulkham Hills employ various techniques and treatments to address issues related to bad backs and backpacks. To alleviate pain or discomfort caused by bad backs and heavy backpacks, chiropractors may use the following techniques:

  1. Spinal Manipulation: Chiropractors often perform spinal adjustments to realign the spine, reduce nerve irritability, and improve range of motion. This can help alleviate pain and discomfort caused by bad backs and the strain from heavy backpacks.
  2. Soft Tissue Therapy: Chiropractors in Baulkham Hills may utilise soft tissue therapy techniques such as massage, myofascial release, or instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilisation to address muscle tension, stiffness, or inflammation in the back and shoulder areas affected by carrying heavy backpacks.
  3. Postural Education: Chiropractors provide guidance on maintaining proper posture while carrying a backpack to prevent strain on the back and shoulders. They may offer advice on adjusting the backpack straps, distributing weight evenly, and avoiding prolonged periods of carrying heavy loads.
  4. Exercise and Stretching Recommendations: Chiropractors may recommend specific exercises and stretches to strengthen the back muscles, improve flexibility, and enhance overall posture. These exercises can help individuals manage the impact of carrying backpacks on their back health.
  5. Ergonomic Assessment: Chiropractors assess the ergonomic factors related to backpack use, such as the fit of the backpack, the positioning of the straps, and the distribution of weight. They may offer recommendations for selecting backpacks with proper support and adjusting them to minimize strain on the back.

Preventative Measures:

Preventative measures and advice that our chiropractors in Baulkham Hills offer to individuals who frequently carry backpacks include:

  • Encouraging regular breaks from carrying heavy backpacks to relieve the strain on the back and shoulders.
  • Providing guidance on maintaining a healthy weight to reduce the burden on the back when carrying a backpack.
  • Educating individuals on the importance of using both shoulder straps and adjusting them appropriately to distribute weight evenly.
  • Advising on the selection of backpacks with padded shoulder straps and lumbar support to minimize pressure on the spine.

By combining these techniques and preventive measures, chiropractors in Baulkham Hills aim to address and alleviate the discomfort and potential issues associated with bad backs, neck pain and the strain from carrying heavy backpacks.


In the hustle and bustle of our daily lives, it is easy to overlook the potential impact of backpacks on our spinal well-being. By understanding the guidelines provided by health experts in Baulkham Hills and implementing ergonomic practices, we can foster a harmonious relationship between our backs and backpacks. Let’s prioritise our spinal well-being and make informed choices when it comes to selecting, packing, and wearing our backpacks. After all, a healthy back is the key to a more comfortable and pain-free journey through life.

Best Chiropractor Near Me:

Our Clinic located in Baulkham Hills offers a wide range of practices such as sports physiotherapy, acupuncture, chiropractic appointments, rehabilitation appointments and podiatry to help each and every one of our patients with their individual and unique needs. If you are having trouble with back pain, neck pain or finding the right backpack for you, call our Sydney Hills district Clinic on 9639 7337 or book online to create an appointment with our expert sport and exercise Baulkham Hills Chiropractor.

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