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I know how it feels, the first day of school. You have a new backpack, and you can’t wait to show it off! But how do you wear a backpack properly?

There are many ways that some may be more comfortable than others. In this blog post, I will discuss how to wear a backpack properly so that your back won’t hurt as much in the long run.

Wearing a Backpack the Correct Way

One of the most important things to wear a backpack properly is how high it sits. Most people think that wearing your pack at waist height, just above your bottom, would be best for your back. 

The truth about this theory is that how tall you are playing into how high or low the weight should sit on your shoulders. When worn too low, you tend to lean forward, and the backpack’s weight pulls you back. It is how most people get their neck and shoulder aches. When worn too high, it will cause your hips and lower back to take on some of this pressure instead.

The best way to wear a backpack properly when wearing one for long periods is to have the weight sit a few inches above your waistline. This technique will prevent you from leaning forward or backward and take some of the pressure off your shoulders, neck, and back!

The backpack should also rest evenly on both sides of your body to not cause an imbalance in one shoulder higher than another. The feel of wearing a pack is that it has the weight of your bag evenly distributed across both shoulders. It should feel like you are wearing nothing at all!

Carrying Backpacks With Style

Another thing to remember when carrying backpacks for long periods, or even short ones with heavyweights, is how you hold them. Use both straps so that you can distribute the weight evenly.

Over-the-Shoulder Carrying of Backpack

You should avoid this method because it has your backpack resting on one shoulder and will cause severe neck, back, and arm pain. It also makes it hard for anyone else who might need to borrow your backpack.

One-Shoulder Carrying of Backpack 

It is a popular style, but the problem with it is that you have to put your backpack down when using one hand to keep going and not worry about setting down your bag or its contents spilling out everywhere!

On Your Belly Carrying of Backpack

It is the least good way to carry a backpack because it has your bag hanging around you and can cause severe back pain. It also makes it hard for anyone else who might need to borrow your backpack.

Luckily, there are many ways to wear a backpack properly so that when it comes to carrying a pack, you can do so with ease!

How Should Children Wear a Backpack?

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), children who attend school should carry only 10% to 20% of their body weight in their backpacks. So, if your child weighs 45 pounds (20.45 kg), his backpack should weigh no more than nine to 4.5 pounds.

Children under five years old don’t even need backpacks since their school supplies can fit in a bag that they hold in front of them. For children aged six and above, it is recommended that they use both straps of the backpack to distribute weight evenly. As for where the pack should sit, AAP recommends it be worn two inches above the waistline, which will take some pressure off children’s back and shoulders.

Backpacks for Carrying or Hiking All Day

We’ll observe the same guideline as established by the AAP, which stipulates that you should not carry more than 10% of your body weight on your back on a day-long trek. For a 120-pound hiker, the backpack should not weigh more than 12 pounds.

You may use both straps to distribute weight across your shoulders evenly and carry it high enough on your back that it is at least four inches above waistline – but not too high up as this will cause you to hunch over.

The Wrong Ways to Wear a Backpack

Let’s take a look at some of the worst ways for people to carry their backpacks before we get into where a pack should sit on their backs.

One Strap Method – The one strap method is when a backpack is carried on only one shoulder. It’s the worst way to carry bags because it puts most of its weight on just one side, which can cause strain and muscle aches.

Backpack in Front – Carrying your pack at your front does take some pressure off, but it can make you lean forward to compensate for the weight. It can cause back pains and aches that will last throughout your day.

Low-On-The-Back – Letting your backpack hang low on you is another big no since it puts most of its weight in front, which causes an imbalance when walking forward with one leg at a time. It also puts strain on your back which can lead to severe injuries over time.

Factors That Affect Wearing a Backpack Properly!

There isn’t a set rule regarding where you should wear a backpack on your back. Because of this, our varied anatomies as humans are to blame. There are, however, a few things to bear in mind.

So, where should a backpack be positioned on your back, and why?

Torso Length Positioning– Torso length is measured from the bony prominence at the base of your neck to your iliac crest, which you can feel by running your fingers down the side of your rib cage. This positioning is ideal because it distributes weight evenly on both sides and helps keep those muscles loose.

Waist Belt-Positioning – A backpack worn around the waist takes the pressure off the lower back and shoulders. When carrying your bag around your waist, use a padded belt to help distribute weight evenly.

Shoulder Strap Positioning – Make sure that the shoulder straps are wide enough that they don’t dig into your skin or cut off circulation. The middle of the strap should sit above the shoulder, while the top should not go higher than your acromion (the bony protrusion at your shoulder joint).

Load Strap Positioning – This is one widely debated topic. How does it work? It goes over both shoulders and should be loose enough to allow you to move freely without rubbing against your neck or back. How high the load strap goes up on your back will depend on your torso or chest length and waist belt-positioning, which we mentioned earlier!


  • Wear both straps to prevent body pains
  • Carry the weight on your hips if you’re preparing for long hikes
  • Adjust shoulder straps to sit above your shoulders but below your neckline
  • Make sure that the pack doesn’t hang too low or too high on your waistline
  • Load straps should be positioned just perfectly, not too tight, so they restrict movement.

Wrap Up

Carrying a backpack is not as simple as throwing it on your shoulders and walking away. With the tips above, you should be able to carry a backpack properly so that it won’t cause long-term pain or injuries! I hope this post has been helpful for you.

Thank you for reading this post on how to wear a backpack properly so that it won’t cause long-term pain or injuries! I hope this has been helpful for you. 

Would you please share your comments with us and leave some feedback about what we can improve on?


Do the new backpack styles have distinct rules?

The procedure is the same, with a few notable modifications.

The first design you could have seen recently is the sling backpack, which goes over the shoulder and is ideal if you make careful to wear the pack as designed and don’t overload it.

 On the other hand, the rolling backpack is probably the most acceptable approach to lose weight from the back. This bag allows kids to eliminate any weight from their backs.

What else should a youngster be aware of when it comes to backpack safety?

Regardless of how heavy the backpack is, it’s crucial to lift it evenly. The kid should face the pack, bend at the knees, check the weight, raise with their legs, and strap on one shoulder at a time. Never carry the bag over one shoulder.

Z Hashan

I’m Z Hashan, an entrepreneur, but more importantly (well, to me at least), a traveler.

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