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Occupational Therapy Students Lend Expertise to Backpack Awareness Day

School News

More than 230 students learned about the serious health effects of overweight backpacks during Walsh University’s Backpack Awareness Day on Wednesday, September 26.

During the event, Walsh’s first year Master of Occupational Therapy students, supervised by OT faculty and Dr. Carey Minard, OTD, OTR/L, conducted individual "weigh-ins" of students and their backpacks to illustrate the amount of weight that students are carrying on their backs to and from school each day. The Walsh students also provided guidance on backpack purchasing and proper wearing techniques to minimize the risk.

Canton Repository: How heavy is too heavy for a backpack? 

Akron Beacon Journal: Students warned about health burdens of heavy backpacks

The American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) recommends that backpacks weigh no more than 10 percent of the student’s body weight. Making small adjustments to the items students are carrying can go a long way to lessen the load.

Held in partnership with the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), this was the second year for the event which was geared towards educating communities about the consequences from backpacks that are too heavy or worn improperly. This local event was part of the National School Backpack Awareness Day, being held by occupational therapy practitioners, educators, and health professionals across the country.