Elementary Students Carrying the Academic Load

September 21st, 2005-- Posted at 6:45 p.m. CDT

Forrest City, AR-- How much is too much for children to carry to and from school?  Today was National School Backpack Awareness Day in Forrest City and the goal was to educate students and teachers about how to properly wear a backpack.

The average student carries a backpack weighing almost 25 percent their body weight. It is recommended a backpack should weight no more than 15 percent. It's this extra weight that could cause students discomfort.

"It's a problem nationally not just in this school district because this can cause chronic back pains muscle pains can cause damage to their spinal cords. It can damage a lot of things," said Erin Nave, Occupational Therapist for Forrest City School District.

Parents should pay attention to what their children carry to school. Part of that is purchasing the correct type of backpack.

"Some of the stylish backpacks are not always the best, the best one is the two straps with the waist band," says Nave.

For more tips to ligthen your child's load you can log onto www.aota.org.