Do schoolbags cause back pain in children and adolescents?

Are schoolbag use characteristics risk factors for back pain in children and adolescents?

Schoolbag weight is commonly thought to be a significant factor for back pain complaints in children and adolescents, but there is little scientific evidence to back these claims up.

In fact, after analysing the available evidence, the authors of this review found that no factors associated with schoolbag use, including weight, design, and carriage method, were associated with increased risk of back pain in children and adolescents!

However, the volume of research and the lack of any type of association between schoolbag use and back pain suggest that resources dedicated to the prevention of back pain in children and adolescents are better spent elsewhere.

These findings have important implications in terms of education regarding backpack recommendations and advising parents based on accurate scientific evidence, free from unsubstantiated claims and financial interests.  

> From: Yamato et al., Br J Sports Med 52 (2018) 1241-1245 (Epub ahead of print). All rights reserved to BMJ Publishing Group Ltd. Click here for the online summary.

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