Backpacks can be a heavy load


Gazebo Photo by EmmaJane Canady

Whenever someone lifts my backpack, I hear a grunt and then “why is your backpack so heavy?”

Well, that’s because the only thing I keep in my locker is my AP World History textbook.

In middle school, when we didn’t have to carry our backpack to class, I would put my binders in my locker, hang my backpack, and retrieve the binders I needed before class started. After school, I would put all my binders in my backpack, so I could take them all home. I was always afraid of leaving something I needed at school and not being able to finish all my homework.

Once high school started, and I was required to bring my backpack to all my classes, I started just carrying all my binders everywhere. I didn’t want to risk being late to a class because of binders in my locker.

Currently, my backpack weighs about 25 pounds. However,  I only have to walk from class to class with it, which usually doesn’t take longer than five minutes, so it doesn’t hurt my back during the school day.

After school, if I carry my backpack for 20 minutes or longer it may begin to hurt, though.

My mom tells me that I’m going to have back problems when I grow up. I hope that’s not true, but it is quite possible.

According to the American Occupational Therapy Association, a backpack should not be more than 15 percent of a person’s weight. That’s not true of mine. (I weigh about 105 pounds.)

I know I should change, but I don’t want to forget to bring papers and binders to class. One of the two things I keep in my locker instead of my backpack is my laptop, and I am always forgetting to bring that to journalism, where I need it. Then, I have to rush to get up, walk back to the main building, and run back before class starts.

I may try to train myself to go to my locker more often in the day and use it more frequently, but if I start forgetting homework, then I’ll probably switch back to my old ways.