A necessity for school-going kids is a school bag. There is nothing cooler than going back to school with a trendy new backpack. As one size does not fit all, here is how to select the best one for your child:
Mind the size: It is important to consider the size and weight of the child when buying a new bag. Many parents tend to choose bigger ones and assume that kids will “grow into it”. However, backpacks that do not fit properly have the potential to cause back and shoulder strain or pain. When shopping for a backpack, consider proper fit and comfort over price. Often times, the best backpack may not be the most stylish, or expensive. Choose a padded backpack that fits your child properly for a comfortable commute to class.
Also, look for broad straps with padding for the shoulders, both to offer more comfort, and protect the shoulders from excessive pressure. It is important that both straps be used in order to distribute the weight of the backpack evenly. Using just one strap adds extra strain to that one shoulder. Adjustable straps are useful, not just for proper fit but for proper positioning – again, the backpack should sit just slightly above the waist and both straps should stay even in length.
Choose the type wisely: Ideally the weight of a backpack should not exceed 15 percent of the child’s body weight. So, if your child has to carry a lot of heavy books to school and bag, consider investing in a trolley-style bag instead of a carry-on. This will take the weight off their shoulders. Also make sure that the bag has enough zippers and pouches to give the child easy access to its contents.
Pick a good quality backpack: The largest selection of school backpacks are available during the back-to-school shopping season, and the quality and price can vary during this time. This is the best time to take advantage of backpack sales, but you have to shop smartly.
You might be tempted to buy a backpack that is inexpensive and trendy, and just assume that if you have any problems that you will be able to replace it. However, inexpensive, low-quality backpacks typically last for a few weeks to a few months. To ensure you get a quality backpack, look over the backpack, inside and out, and keep an eye on the following:
- Avoid loose, uneven or careless stitching that could easily come undone.
- Check for raw or frayed fabric edges which could unravel.
- Pass on weak zippers or ones that seem to get stuck. Instead, opt for zippers that have fabric flaps over them to keep water and other elements out of the backpack.
Let the kids tag along: For many kids, the bag’s appearance plays a big role in their confidence levels at school. So, let them pick a design and style they prefer. Of course, you can share your opinion on it, but create an environment where they feel like a purchase was based on their own decision. This initiative can contribute towards your child’s leadership skills in the future.