At Pivotal Motion, our focus is always on the prevention of injuries. We often see a surge of students come into the clinic not long after the holiday period has ended and school has started, with injuries, aches and niggles from a variety of reasons. To help prevent these issues, Butch’s Back to School Tips ensure a pain-free return to school.
Watch your posture:
As kids will be back to sitting at desks for long periods of time, it is important to remind kids on the correct way to sit when listening to a lesson or doing school work.
Some points to keep in mind:
- Feet are flat on the ground and knees are about 90 degrees.
- Shoulders are pinched backwards and not rolled forwards.
- Chin is tucked in towards the spine
- Lower back is arched and not slouched back onto the seat.
- If you’re working on a computer, ensure the screen monitor is eye level.
- If you’re writing on a desk, take regular breaks from looking down to avoid a build up of neck and shoulder tension.
Remember to warm up before any exercise:
When getting back into physical activity, warming up is key to ensure the body is well prepared for activity. Warming up ensures each muscle involved is pumped with blood and ready for contraction. This is important during PE lessons or at lunch time. Starting physical activity without any warm up is high risk for sustaining injuries.
Carry your backpack correctly:
We always see students carry their backpacks over one shoulder leading to imbalances in body alignment and posture. This includes issues such as the back tightening on the side the bag is carried and tightness in the neck/upper shoulder on the opposite side to the bag due to one shoulder sitting higher than the other. To avoid this, we advise our students to carry their backpacks using both shoulder straps. This also applies to sports bags.
Another important note to remember is to pull the bag straps up to lift the backpack higher. This automatically improves posture because the weight is distributed more efficiently.
Don’t overload your backpack:
We often see students lug heavy backpacks over their backs. This forces the back to slouch and enhances an incorrect posture which then leads to injury. Therefore, we urge students not to overload their bags. According to The Spine Health institute, your child’s backpack should weigh no more than 10-15% of their bodyweight. This amount of load is tolerable on your child’s spine. For more tips on getting the right fitted backpack for your child, Pivotal Motion have a few tips online.
Organise your study/homework habits:
Although not directly linked to injury, we know that stress can lead to impaired optimum physical health. Stress from poor organisation of school work can cause tension in certain muscles resulting in many different niggles around the body. To avoid this, we recommend students to use daily planners to better organise study and homework habits. This can help manage stress better and avoid injury.
Other habits to instil include starting assignments early to avoid the last minute rush, eating the right foods to fuel the brain and getting enough sleep. These are just some tips we’ve come up with to help our clients with an easy start into the school year. If you have any specific issues or if your child is currently injured, don’t hesitate to see the friendly team at Pivotal Motion Physiotherapy to help assist them in their recovery.
Other Top Tips on Returning Back to School from Pivotal Motion Physiotherapy are available online.
If you or your child is having issues with their backpacks, don’t hesitate to come in and see us! Call us today on 07 3352 5116 or book an appointment online.
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