Comparison between two different types of school bags and musculoskeletal symptoms in primary school students (full text in pdf)
Dimitrios Rontogiannis 1, a
Panagiotis Tsaklis 1, 2, b
Savvas Mavromoustakos 3
Stavros Kottaras 3
1 Department of Physiotherapy, Lab of Biomechanics & Ergonomics, Alexander Technological Educational Institute of Thessaloniki, Greece
2 Department of Molecular Medicine and Surgery, Karolinska Institutet, Sweden
3 Department of Physiotherapy, Alexander Technological Educational Institute of Thessaloniki, Greece
Abstract The subject of this research was to find out the relationship between the school bag (trolley bags and shoulder bags) and the appearance of musculoskeletal symptoms in Greek primary school pupils, as well as to discuss ways in which these symptoms can be avoided. The sample consisted of 199 primary school children, aged 7-12 years old. Also, questionnaires answered by their parent-guardians and the educational staff of the school where the survey was conducted. The measuring tools used were questionnaires, measuring tape, electronic scale and electronic dynamometer. The results indicated that the 60.8% of children, regardless of the type of bag, reported some musculoskeletal pain during the transfer of the school bag, with pupils with a shoulder bag showing 65.3% musculoskeletal pain and 42.9% of those with trolley bag showing musculoskeletal pains. However, students with trolley bags carry heavier bags, than the pupils with shoulder bags, and the ratio between the body weight and the bag weight of the pupils in all classes exceed the 10% suggested by the literature. Findings made during this study suggest that children, parents and teachers should be trained on the characteristics of the school bag and its safe transport. Parents should have a more active role in promoting safety and should represent the team that will most likely help to significantly reduce the damage associated with carrying the school bag, choosing safe school backpacks, supervising the contents of the bag and checking its weight.
Keywords: School bag; musculoskeletal symptoms; primary school.