Can you believe that the school holidays are almost over?  I am so not ready to leave my holiday bubble and face the lunchbox struggle!!!

But reality can’t be denied.

So this means it’s time to get some prep done so that the first week won’t resemble a frontline battle with me the yelling sergeant and my daughter the mutinying troop who refuses to leave the safety of her bed, her iPad and the fully loaded, unlimited access fridge.

What’s in a Backpack?

These are the work horses of our kid’s day and need to be given far more consideration than whether it has the latest logo or Disney character plastered all over it.

So here’s a few important components we should look for in a backpack:

  • The length of the backpack should sit between the top of their shoulders and the base of their back.
  • The shoulder straps should be wide and padded to help distribute the weight in the bag.

  • Ideally there will be a waist and chest strap (which they won’t wear without some serious nagging on your part) which takes more load off their spine and distributes it onto their hips.
  • At least 2 pockets are necessary but more is better. When placing items in the backpack always put the heaviest items towards the back and the lighter items to the front.
  • If they have too many items to bring home then get them to carry some in their arms rather than overloading the backpack.  This will stop them tipping over like a turtle when their backpack is full. 
  • According to the Australian Chiropractor’s Association the backpack should not weigh more than 10% of your child’s body weight when packed to help prevent potential back pain and promote healthy spinal growth. 
  • Considering how much our kids cart around these days, this can be tricky to achieve.  So the best advice is to ask them if they really need to bring it all home.  Try and get them to leave what they don’t need at school and only carry the essentials.

Shoes Matter!

This isn’t just relevant to Cinderella!  Next on our list is the school shoe.

Here’s a few facts about our feet. Did you know that:

  • each foot has 26 bones, 33 joints, 19 muscles, 10 tendons and 109 ligaments;
  • we have 125,000 sweat glands on each foot;
  • a pair of feet can produce 500ml of sweat a day – ewww;
  • when we walk each foot takes 1.5 times our body weight with each step; and
  • your child will spend on average 30 hours a week in their school shoes.

With this knowledge it makes sense to give our kids the best shoes that we can afford to support their growing feet.

My advice is to go to a shoe store that has fitting specialists as, just like the oils (sorry old joke), no foot is the same (even on the same person).

Some have high arches, some low.  Some have wide feet, some thin.

And, as our kids seem to be growing faster than the summer temperatures it is important that the shoe supports them through the structural and functional changes that come with all that development.

Head to a good shoe store and get some good advice on what your child needs because poor foot development can have a major impact on their growing spine.

Time for Routines!

Now that the 2 main purchases are sorted it’s probably time to consider how you can get your mutinying soldier ready for the shock that’s coming with the alarm clock. 

If they are anything like my pre-teen, the pain is going to be real for all of us!!

Firstly try getting them to go to bed 10 minutes earlier and get up 15 minutes earlier each day in the week leading up to school starting

It doesn’t seem like much but the accumulative effect is really helpful.

Secondly, slow down the graze and set up mealtimes again. 

There is nothing better than having no dinner schedule to make everyone feel like they are on holidays but re-establishing the routine helps them prepare for the school day schedules again and that’s good for them and their teacher!

Although I can’t prolong the holidays and stop reality from rushing back, I hope these few tips helped and you manage to get school with as little pain as possible. 

Personally, I will probably stay in my bubble for another few days cause I truly love the holidays! No matter when you decide to burst your bubble, I wish you luck with the reality transition and hope your kids have a brilliant start to the 2020 school year.



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Lorraine Scarr,
The Bod Squad

After graduating from Macquarie University in 2000 and working for a year in Sydney, Lorraine moved to Adelaide with her husband to continue her chiropractic career. She instantly fell in love with the city and now considers herself a local.

Now the owner and principle chiropractor at the allied health clinic, The Bod Squad, and mother of one beautiful girl, Lorraine considers it a privilege to be able to deliver health care to her patients whatever their age, physical condition or state of health.

A fan of family time, wine, food, cooking, holidays and all things French, Lorraine and her team can help you and your family achieve your health goals and live a healthier and happier life.

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