5 Questions to ask Before Choosing a Backpack for Your Child

Whenever it’s time to go back to school, on a trip or even a sleepover at a friend’s house, what does your kid really need? A cool backpack to stuff it with everything they need, right?

We all know that whenever your kid is choosing a backpack it has to be suitable, safe and unique. Safety comes first because injuries due to overloaded backpacks or due to backpacks with poor quality actually happen! According to the U.S. Consumer Products and Safety Commission, an average of 7000 kids get injured yearly due to accidents that happen because of their backpacks. These statistics may be enough for you to think twice before you buy a cheap quality backpack for your kids because it was the cheapest deal.

Low-quality backpacks not only can cause injury, but they can also affect your child’s posture and put stress on their spine. This is the last thing that you want to happen to your little ones.

So, we prepared a guide to help you choose a backpack that will be suitable for your child’s age, serve its purpose and have all the storage compartments you will need. You should ask yourself the following initial questions to find out whether you have chosen a solid backpack. After that, you’ll need to decide on the design, color and other details solely depending on your preference.

In the end, picking out the perfect backpack can be tough because there are so many different types of kids backpacks available to choose from. So hopefully, we can help you make a more informed decision.

1. Is the Size of the Backpack in Accordance with Your Kid’s Age?

The backpack you choose should be suitable for your kid’s age. So, avoid buying big backpacks that will be automatically overloaded and cause an issue by hurting your kid’s back or neck. Instead of letting your child pick a backpack with their favorite character or hero, make sure you are first going for a size that will fit them properly.

If you don’t have a clue what size would be the best for your child, make sure to let them try on some of the options. Therefore, we don’t recommend online shopping for this one, unless you know the exact dimensions you’re looking for.

2. Are the Straps Strong Enough?

According to the pediatrician, Dr. Benjamin Hoffman from Doernbecher Children’s Hospital the perfect backpack has two straps that are padded, wide and lying perfectly on the shoulders. This way the weight will be evened out on both shoulders and it won’t affect the posture or the back. Backpacks with one strap will put all the weight and pressure only on one of the shoulders which can lead to pain, possible injury and also affect the spine.

Before buying a backpack, check out whether the straps are both soft and durable. Soft and durable is the ideal combination for most kids. Picking out a backpack that has an additional chest or waist strap is even a better option because it will add up to the stability and weight distribution of the backpack.

3. Does the Backpack Have Padding?

Padding on the back will make the backpack comfortable and easy to carry for your kids. However, you should check if the padding is of good quality. You can just pinch it. If you pinch it and it goes back into its original shape, then the backpack is of good quality. If the backpack doesn’t have padding to support the back, maybe stay away, because it won’t serve your kids well.

4. How Many Storage Compartments Should the Backpack Have?

The more compartments a backpack has the more practical it will be. Unless you are choosing a backpack for only packing clothes, you should go for one that has several compartments. This way the weight will be equally divided, compared to backpacks that have only one storage space. For instance, your kids would probably need a separate compartment for their books, one for their lunch and water, another one for their pencils, and so forth.

5. Should You Consider Backpacks with Wheels?

Backpacks with wheels may look like a great idea to many parents because this type of backpack will help keep the weight off your kid’s shoulders as they would just have to drag their bags around.

However, what actually happens with backpacks with wheels is that they usually have teeny-tiny wheels that will bounce up and down and back and forth once they are dragged around. This actually means that this type of backpacks often gets stuck. So, your kid would have to actually lift them and properly place them. Also, most of these backpacks are actually too big and don’t fit in the lockers. That’s why many schools disapprove of backpacks with wheels.

For more great parenting tips, check out the other blogs on Cyber Parent.

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