With time to go back to school just around the corner, we decided to post this buying guide to help with purchasing new school Backpacks and Bookbags.
Why is choosing and fitting the correct bookbag and backpack important?
A school bookbag or backpack is basically a students closet, locker and travel companion that is used to carry books, school supplies, gym clothes, lunch and everything else that the student will need throughout the school year.
Every year it seems that there is more and more “stuff” is being transported back and forth to school. Ever increasing the amount of weight that must be carried by the student in their bookbags.
According to the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) website “More than 40 million students in the United States carry backpacks. According to one study, six out of ten students 9 to 20 years of age reported chronic back pain related to backpacks.”
The American Occupational Therapy Association also reports that physicians see thousands of students each year for back pain caused by carrying bookbags that are too heavy. One study with American students revealed that six out of 10 students (ages nine to 20) reported chronic back pain related to heavy bookbags.
In another study conducted after backpack education, eight of 10 middle-school students who packed their school backpacks and carried them correctly reported less pain and strain in their backs, necks and shoulders.
Some manufacturers designed backpacks from the ground up that are intended to distribute weight more evenly across the back of the user, making even heavy loads carry more safely.
What features are important in new school backpacks and bookbags?
While everyone’s needs and requirements for their bookbags and backpacks may be slightly different, the following list should provide you with a starting point for features that should be present on any quality backpack that is used for shool.
- Two well-padded and fully adjustable shoulder straps for comfort.
- Reflective patches or materials that increase visibility at night or during poor weather conditions.
- Waist belt that can be used to help support heavier loads more evenly.
- Non-slip surfaces on shoulder straps to prevent straps from slipping from shoulders.
- Waterproof or water-resistant fabric to keep school books and homework safe from rain, sleet, snow, etc.
- Multiple pockets and/or compartments to carry and keep pens, calculator, books, lunch, phone, mp3 player, etc. organized and easy to find.
- Durable fabric - Nylon backpacks should have a high Denier count, Ballistic Nylon backpacks will last the longest.
- Durable and easy to pull open zippers with easy to grap pull tabs.
- Lightweight materials and construction - every ounce that the backpack weighs is another ounce that the student must carry every day that they use that backpack.
- Wheeled backpacks should have roller-blade style wheels that are slightly recessed into the main body of the bookbag itself and should be as widely spaced as possible for maximum balance and support.
What are the most popular or ‘cool’ bookbags and backpacks?
Some of the most popular and best selling backpacks that are used for school bookbags are listed below.
Columbia Sportswear Collector P Cubed
Backpack and Messenger Bags by Columbia are both durable and functional. Made with 600 Denier Polyester and packed full of useful features, you can be sure to find a great bag for your day at school or other day-to-day adventures.
JanSport Super Break Backpack
An all-time classic, JanSport’s Super Break has been the #1 selling backpack in the world since 1979. Colors and patterns change with the times, but the classic shape and reliable quality remain.
Ogio Girls Shifter Backpack
Designed with Girls in mind, this collection features high performing backpacks, messengers and handbags with details like quick-stash lipstick compartments and “no boys allowed” zippered pockets. Original Ogio extreme style, fashioned with stylish little details girls crave.
Columbia Sportswear Science Park CyberRoller
Columbia is known as a product innovator and has an unparalleled reputation for quality and value. Each bag is made with great fabrics and multiple pockets, as well as a laptop computer pocket. With a great selection of Laptop Bags everyone is sure to find a bag for their next trip, day at school, or just an afternoon at the coffee shop.
Ogio Legend (Hosoi) Laptop Skateboard Backpack
You can’t help but get stoked about the new variety of Skate bags by Ogio. From Camera Bags to Laptop Skateboard Bags everyone is sure to find that perfect unique bag. Abundant pockets and places for all your little gadgets keeps everything right where they need to be.
JanSport Big Student Backpack
Big Student features classic JanSport styling, but is oversized for maximum capicity. Two large main compartments provide all the room you may need for books and notebooks, while additional pockets for cell phone and accessories keep important items close at hand. Constructed in a variety of colors and patterns, of quality JanSport materials.