Public Health Conference in Al Quds University

shurouq qadous's picture
Research Title: 
Effect of School Bag Weight and carrying way on Neck, Shoulder, and Back on Primary School Students in Nablus City
Jararaa A.
Abu Nabaa A.
Eshtayeh E.
Amerah M.
Alkaissi A.
Qadous Sh.
Thu, 2011-12-01
Research Abstract: 

There is ongoing concern regarding the heavy weight of children's’ schoolbags, and the physical problems that resulted from carrying such bags every day. Students always use schoolbags to carry their school books without knowing that these heavy bags can cause several problems such as musculoskeletal problems. To our knowledge there is no data available focused on this in Palestine. There is need of exploring the health implications of carrying heavy bags among primary school students.
Objectives: This study aimed to determine the relationship between schoolbag weight, schoolbag type, duration of carrying bag, way to carrying bag, gender and age with neck, shoulder and back pain in Palestine's schools.
Methods: Cross-sectional study was performed among a sample of 200 primary school students in Nablus city. Data were collected by using a questionnaire, and measurement of both weights of the schoolbag and the body of each participant. Then data were analyzed by SPSS software.
Results: Two hundred students, mean age 9.5 years, successfully completed the questionnaire. The mean schoolbag weight was 3.6kg. The mean schoolbag weight (as a percentage of mean body weight) carried by the students was (10.3%). The proportion of schoolbag to the student weight >15% was 7.5%. We also found 96%  students use bags with two straps, but only 91.5% carried them on two shoulders. The females recorded the highest prevalence of shoulder discomfort (72%). Whereas recorded boys (47%). Back pain was reported by females (36%) more than by males (6%). Neck pain was reported by females (15%) less than by males (17%).
Conclusion: The physical symptoms such as back pain, shoulder discomfort and neck pain were strongly related to the bag weight and the grade of the students. Girls reported more discomfort due to carrying a schoolbag than boys.
Keywords: Schoolbag, schoolbag weight,  pain, primary students.