The school year has just begun for children, teenagers, college students, and all of their parents. Among the tasks that come along with this are studying and doing homework, shopping for new school supplies–and, of course, lugging it all around in a heavy backpack.

It doesn’t take a scientific study to show that carrying a heavy backpack all day long is more than just a burden; we can actually feel that it is also detrimental to our health. And now, the American Occupational Therapy Association has declared a special day to draw awareness to the cause: AOTA’s National School Backpack Awareness Day™, observed on the third Wednesday of each September.

This September 19, representatives of AOTA are teaching students, parents, educators, school administrators, and community members valuable safety tips to stay protected from back pain. Check their official website for information on organized events in your area, and learn what to teach others about properly choosing, packing, lifting and carrying different types of bags (including backpacks, purses, suitcases and briefcases) throughout life.

We at BackJoy dedicate this day to learning more about the affects of backpacks on our health, and ways to prevent long-term damage to our bodies. We’d love for you to join us in our efforts, by sharing your own tips and tricks for relieving aches and pains! Please let us know in the comments below: Have you had a chance to learn any of AOTA’s tips, either on their website or at one of their scheduled events? If so, what was your take-away? Is there anything you’d like to add to the conversation?

Lastly, be sure to visit BackJoy.com to see our own version of the school backpack: the Ivar Revel G2, which features Ivar’s patented internal shelf design for maximum ergonomic weight distribution and organization!

By Liana Orenstein