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Back to school

The start of the new academic year is looming and so many of us will be hitting the shops for school supplies and getting ourselves (or our little people) ready for a new term! This can be an exciting but also a daunting time, especially if you have small children starting primary school for the first time, or surely even scarier your ‘baby’ (in your eyes at least) is heading off to secondary school!

Here are some top tips from Polly on getting your tiny (or not so tiny) tots all kitted out for school and some things to consider in those first few weeks if you do have a new starter.

Getting kitted out:

Always consider what is best for your child’s back when buying a new school bag. Scarily, in a recent research report published in the Archives of Disease in Childhood, 50% of children carrying heavy back packs had a higher risk of back pain. That’s right – 50%!! Help to avoid your child experiencing back pain because of their bag by:

  • Choosing a rucksack that they will wear on BOTH shoulders!
  • Make sure they wear the straps shorts so that the bag doesn’t hang on their bottoms (even if that is more fashionable?!)
  • Do a weekly cleanse of their school bag to make sure they aren’t carrying anything they don’t need to be.
  • Bring your child in for a free posture check and bring their bag in too!

If you’re shopping for shoes as well as bags then the very best are supportive school shoes. The more supportive the better! Soft-soled shoes that are supportive and have a good grip will make it easier to carry a heavy (though hopefully not too heavy!) school bag.

Once they start:

For small children starting primary school, we’d advise you don’t get too worried about specific milestones.  Small/fine motor skills come after the gross motor skills have developed, so the most important thing is to let your child MOVE! Let them climb, crawl, run, skip, hop!

If you like to keep your child busy after school try to ensure they have at least one evening a week with no clubs – as they really will need the rest! Especially as they adapt to new routines etc.

Make sure they do regular gentle stretches, particularly if they are very physically active. You could try doing some stretches together at home so that they feel confident doing them before any sporting activities.

Chiropractic By Hand offers free Back to School Posture Checks – book online now.