At the start of each school year, millions of parents buy their children new backpacks as they are constantly worried that not choosing the right bag could leave their kids with long-term back or spinal pain.
But Dr Michael Holmes, of Brock University in Ontario, Canada, says parents do not need to buy into the hype because there is no evidence that backpacks can cause back pain or damage to the spine.
He says that as long as parents teach children to wear their knapsacks properly with both straps, then the weight is distributed equally and their backs would not be harmed.
However, Dr Holmes does recommend choosing a traditional backpack over a shoulder bag, a cross-body bag, or a messenger bag,
These bags constantly put pressure on muscles, tissues and nerves found in the shoulder, causing pain in the neck, shoulders and upper back. Because most people carry their bags on the same side, the strain is not equally distributed.