The effects of backpack load placement on balance of schoolchildren

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The effects of backpack load placement on balance of schoolchildren


Author: Lo, Wan-wah Lowena
Title: The effects of backpack load placement on balance of schoolchildren
Degree: M.Sc.
Year: 2008
Subject: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations.
School children -- China -- Hong Kong -- Health and hygiene.
Backpacking injuries.
Department: Dept. of Health Technology and Informatics
Pages: vii, 53 leaves : col. ill. ; 30 cm.
Language: English
InnoPac Record:
Abstract: Backpack is commonly used for schoolchildren and the backpack weight and locations have shown to have effects on posture, physiological costs and physical performance. Alteration in stability and the experience or potential for falling may become significant and possible to happen. This has been done for the investigation in the group of schoolchildren with backpack, but not yet for the effects of backpack placement. The purpose of this study was to identify effects of backpack weight and placement on postural balance of schoolchildren during static standing and the effects of gender were also investigated. Twenty-five normal schoolchildren (12 females and 13 males) with mean age, height, and weight of 12.3+-1.5 years, 147.4+-7.5 centimeters and 41.9+-8.0 kilograms respectively were recruited. The postural balance of normal schoolchildren were investigated by a force platform during static standing and when a load of 15% of body weight was positioned at T12 either anterioly or posteriorly. Data of center of pressure from force platform were analyzed. Eight parameters namely anteroposterior amplitude, mediolateral amplitude, path length, average radial displacement, sway area per second, mean sway frequency, short term diffusion coefficient and scaling exponent were analyzed to identify the effects of the between-subject (gender) and within-subject factors (unload, posterior load and anterior load conditions), as well as their interaction. Significant effects of load were found in average radial displacement (P<0.001), sway area/second (P=0.042), and mean sway frequency (P<0.001). For gender, significant effects were only found in medio-lateral amplitude (P=0.034). No significant interaction between load and gender factors was found. According to the result, female might have a better balance function than male schoolchildren. Although the postural sway was not significantly higher for loaded condition and no significant difference between posterior and anterior load carriage, attention should be paid whenever the schoolbags weight is exceeding 15% of a child's body weight.

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