Is your Backpack Too heavy? You should figure out what happens when you carry a heavy backpack. If you don’t carry your backpack the right way, you may face some physical fitness issues and injuries like back pain, shoulder pain, neck pain, etc.
Carrying a backpack in the right way can help you to carry heavy weight even for long distances. Therefore, you’ll need to figure out the best ways to carry your pack. This article will help you Deal With A Heavy Backpack.
In our educational system, kids are carrying a heavy backpacks. Travelers and hikers also carry heavy hiking backpacks. Carrying a too-heavy backpack is not a convenient way of doing so. It means lifting too much weight from your body strength.
Although, a backpack is recommended over other pack designs like a cross-body messenger bag or a tote bag due to easy to carry design, carrying it the correct way is very important.
Now, let me discuss how backpacks contribute to back pain and what you can do.
9 Tips to Carry a Heavy Backpack – Right Way to Carry Backpack
Properly wearing a backpack can help you avoid these problems. These tips will help you wear your heavy backpack for back pain, lowe pain, shoulder pain and neck pain prevention. You can train yourself to carry a heavy pack using these steps.
Here are 8 tips to Avoid Injury when carrying a heavy backpack:
1. Always Wear Both Straps
Using both straps of the backpack is the best approach which can secure you from hurting injuries. I have discussed some characteristics of a good backpack below this guide.
Carrying a heavy bag on one shoulder can cause shoulder injuries. So whenever you go out with a backpack or daypack, you must try to use both straps of the bag.
2. Properly Adjust the Straps
Most of the backpacks give you the option of adjustable straps. You can resize the straps according to your height and comfort.
It’s important to adjust the straps after putting your backpack on to ensure that it rides at the proper height on your back. Your shoulders and back will thank you when you will provide ease to yourself.
3. Walk with Right Posture
Your walking posture matters whether you are carrying a backpack with you or not. Ensure that the heaviest items in your backpack are close to your back.
- Keep your head up
- Lengthen your back
- Stand up straight
- Keep your chin up
- Let your shoulders be back and relaxed
- Do not lean forward or lean back
4. Properly Tighten the Straps
Straps of your backpack should be tightened properly. It should not be too tight nor too loose. Just keep it easy to wear and remove.
5. Limit the Weight of the Backpack
Organize your bag so that it contains only the items that you will need. When you feel that your pack is going too heavy for you, just minus the item which is not necessary for you to take with you.
6. Use a Convertible Backpack
You can choose a bag which is convertible from a backpack to a messenger bag or handbag. A convertible bag can help you to get a rest for your shoulder and back.
7. Use Waist Strap or Chest Strap (if available)
If your bag gives you the functionality of waist straps then you should fasten these straps also. The waist straps help disperse the weight of the backpack away from your shoulders a little.
Its main purpose is to prevent the shoulder straps from sliding off your arms when you are moving around and to pull them inward so a little more room is available for your arms.
8. Proper Backpack Fit
Properly adjust your backpack straps according to your ease and comfort. Your backpack should not be loose or strongly tightened.
9. Use Padded Cushioned Backpack
Your backpack may not be comfortable. A backpack must have padded/cushion shoulder straps, curved design straps, and be medium in size.
Wrong ways of Carrying a Backpack
1. Using only one strap (Sling bag style)
Backpacks are designed to easily carry your daily essentials, equipment, and tools. Its two shoulder straps are used to properly fit on your shoulders. So, using only one strap is something like using a sling bag. Sling bags contain only one main shoulder strap.
Therefore, using only one strap of a backpack is the wrong way of carrying a backpack.
2. Too Low the Back (Loose Straps)
If your bag is too low on your bag, it is a bad way of lifting your backpack. In general, the pack shouldn’t extend past two inches above your hips. If there is a gap at the shoulders, it means your pack is too long for you.
3. Too High on the Back
If your bag is too high on your bag, this is also a bad way of lifting your backpack. The straps should be adjusted so that it sits two inches below the shoulder.
Effects of Carrying a Heavy Backpacks
You can read about why a backpack hurting my shoulders, back, and neck with the best solutions.
1. Shoulder Pain from a Heavy Backpack
Shoulder pain is the first problem you may face when you carry a heavy backpack. You will feel stress in your muscles and a little tiredness in the early days.
So when you feel such signs, there is an alarming situation, and you have to take action to save your body from any hurting problem. Your child may have told you about the shoulder pain after coming back from school then this is the time to take action.
2. Lower Back Pain from a Heavy Backpack
A lower backpack is another main issue that can arise if you don’t pay attention while lifting a heavy backpack.
Back pain can affect people of any age, for different reasons. Lifting too heavy weight on your back like a backpack is one of the reasons which can lead to muscle or ligament strain.
3. Neck Pain or Headache from Backpack
Neck pain is also another problem seen in people who pick a daypack or backpack daily. This problem is commonly found in school students.
4. Can Lead to a Poor Back Posture
Carrying heavy backpacks can lead to forwarding leaning. A rounded upper back and rounded shoulders may result from this over time. As a result of the heavyweight, poor posture can result from not using a backpack properly.
What is Right Weight for a Backpack?
Some people suggest not lifting more than 10% of your body weight. But, if you have strong and healthy muscles and you pick it in the right posture, then 10% or 15% rules are not exact for you. On the other hand, if you don’t have strong body fitness then this 10% weight of your body may be overweight for you.
As said: “Dr. Rome recommends children should not carry more than 10% to 15% of their body weight in their backpacks.” This is a good suggestion by Dr. Rome for a normal person. But, every person is not in the same physical condition.
Some of the people are very strong in physical health with strong muscle power. On the other hand, some people are born physically weak or maybe he/she has a disease. We can’t say that such a person can lift a 10% heavy bag. That’s why my suggestions are different from others in terms of carrying a heavy-weight bag, backpack, or any other object.
Conclusion: Tthe bag or backpack weight should be according to the physical health of the person. If you are physically fit and healthy, you can carry heavy weight backpack easily. In the pack, store only those items that are necessary for you to take with you. So, you should only keep a few essential items in your pack.
When is a backpack Hurting? (Symptoms)
Not always a heavy backpack is a cause of these problems. You have to diagnose if your backpack is causing this problem or must consult a physician. Here are the symptoms that show your backpack is not good to use.
- Complaints of neck pain, back pain, shoulder pain, or headaches are the symptoms that show that you are lifting a heavyweight.
- If your child hunches forward to compensate for a heavy backpack, it may be because of the weight of the pack. You can limit the number of books for your child, as well as change your bag.
How to Carry a Backpack More Easily?
- Lightweight: When talking about an easy-to-carry backpack, the weight of the bag should be lightweight. A light in weight bag is a feature of a comfortable and easy to carry pack.
- Rolling Wheeled option: A bag with rolling wheels is the best option when you have too many books, tools, or daily essentials to carry.
- Padded/Air Cushion Shoulder Strap: A comfortable and easy-to-lift bag must contain padded straps, padded bag, and padded handle also.
- Curved for Shoulder Bags: The contoured straps are curved more similarly to our bodies. It curves inward just above your sternum, then outward just below your arms.
- Right Size of the Backpack
- Right height and width: In fact, there is no specific size of bag for every age, but the best size for a comfortable bag is a medium-sized bag according to the height and age of the person.
- Right Backpack size for Childs and Adults: In order to help distribute weight more evenly, it is ideal for a backpack to sit between the shoulder blades.
- Right Backpack size for Hiking: Backpacks between 35L and 50L are ideal for hiking and traveling.
Whether you are a school, college, or university student, traveller, hiker, or a gamer, you must follow the right way of carrying a backpack or bag. If you can reduce the weight of a pack then must neglect unnecessary items from the pack. In this way, you can save your neck, shoulder and back injuries.
When Is a Backpack Too Heavy?
It depends on your physically health and fitness. If you have strong and healthy muscles and you pick any weight as you feel comfortable but in the right posture.
How high/low should I wear my backpack?
Not too high on the back nor too low on your back. Straps of your pack should be tightened properly, not too tight nor too loose. Wearing comfortably on average position is the right way to carry your backpack.
Can Carrying Heavy Backpacks cause Shortness?
No, carrying a heavy backpack can’t cause it shorter you or keep you from growing.
What happens when you wear a heavy backpack all day for a long time?
It can cause serious health injuries like shoulder pain, neck pain, lower back pain and leadw to back body posture.
Can Carrying A Heavy Backpack Build Muscle?
Yes, but carrying it in a proper right posture and with safety tips.