School Bags and Posture

How often do you find yourself telling your teenager to sit up straight or to stop slouching? Unfortunately poor posture in teenagers is very common and can be the result of numerous contributing factors. For example these can include a rapid height gain, body image issues due to body changes and/ or playing on computers and mobiles phones and therefore not doing enough exercise. Habits can form very quickly and poor posture early on in adult life can lead to problems later on.

A significant cause of postural problems can be carrying a large, heavy school bag full of text books and P.E. kit. Whilst it is often essential for teenagers to carry these weights, the bags they use are often far from ideal. Things to consider when choosing a school bag include the number and thickness of the shoulder straps, the size and shape of the bag and of course, how it is being worn. Ideally each student should carry a rucksack with a strap on each shoulder that is tight enough so that the bag sits in the lower back (rather than behind the knees!). A waist strap done up snugly is very useful for distributing the load and a wide should strap is also more comfortable.  One-shoulder bags and ‘handbags’ should definitely be avoided.

It goes without saying that it is also best to carrying the essentials only and if possible leave heavy things at home or in a locker. The weight of a school bag should be no more than 10% of a child’s body weight.

It is important that children and teenagers do not develop asymmetrical postures or movement patterns so any bag which does not have two shoulders straps should be avoided.


Despite the fact that gardening is probably the furthest thing from your mind in this charming British weather, lets live in hope that spending time in the garden will soon be on the agenda!

In preparation for the gardening season, here are a few helpful tips to reduce the likelihood of you hurting yourself.

Gardening is just like any other exercise, so the usual rules apply. Avoid launching straight into heavy digging or lifting. Warm your body up slowly to start by starting with a lightweight task. Also, in the same way that you wouldn’t spend three hours solidly on the treadmill on your first visit to the gym after six months, don’t overdo things in the garden. Take a break every 20-30 minutes and change activity regularly.

If you are weeding, get yourself a garden pillow so you can kneel or sit down rather than bending forward from your lower back. If you are digging, make sure that your body is not twisted.

Pruning is another activity to be careful with. Stand as close as possible to what you are pruning. Be careful not to over-reach or strain. Invest in some long-handled secateurs to make this easier and avoid spending long periods looking upwards, especially if you are prone to neck pain.

Another common way to twinge your back is by lifting heavy items such as compost bags or large plant pots. If possible, ask someone else to help you. Use a trolley to get the heavy items as far as possible, always lift using your legs rather than your back and keep your elbows bent.

If you do over-do things, then now is a good time for your Chiropractic adjustment and/ or massage.


Welcome to our new website! Body Balance Chiropractic Clinic came into being in March 2013 and offers Chiropractic care to all the family. Feel free to browse through the profile  section to find out more about Bethan and the ‘What is Chiropractic’ section to find out which techniques she uses.

We hope you find the website useful, but if there are any questions you have please call Bethan anytime.

Keep an eye on the blog page for articles on current health issues and lifestyle tips.