Hauling a large purse around each day is convenient for keeping essentials with you. However, over time, it can be harmful to your spine. Neck and back pain are common side effects of not carrying a purse properly because your body is pulled from its natural posture. Muscle strains and tension can be a constant issue, so use the tips below to readjust.
How to Carry Your Purse & Prevent Back Pain
1. Keep the Weight Close
The further your bag is from your body, such as the elbow, the worse it’s going to pull. Always wear it on your shoulder and keep it against your body. Less weight will be placed on your spine and back muscles, and you won’t sway. You can relieve additional pressure by keeping the heaviest items on the bottom of the purse and switching sides every five to 10 minutes.
2. Don’t Overload
On average, you shouldn’t carry more than 10–15% of your body weight in a purse. Significant weight immediately draws you to the side. Back and neck muscles have to strain to hold the spine in place. Over time, this can lead to scoliosis, alongside chronic back pain. Pack light and clean your purse regularly, so there’s no dead weight.
3. Find the Right Purse
Larger purses are easier to overload, so consider downsizing. Select a smaller shoulder bag and make sure the straps are the right length. Ideally, you should be able to swing your hips and shoulders while walking without hitting the bag. Crossbody straps distribute weight much better, and wider straps will protect the nerves running through your shoulder and arm. If you’ll be on your feet for a while, consider investing in a purse with backpack straps you can use as needed.
If you’re living with back pain and related issues, the skilled team at Chiropractic Associates of Platteville can help you achieve relief. They offer comprehensive chiropractic care services to patients in Grant County, WI, and take a personalized approach to treatment. Whether it’s nerve or back pain, sciatica, or a sports injury, they’ll build a custom plan to ensure the best recovery. Call (608) 348-3156 to schedule a consultation, and connect with them on Facebook for news and updates. You can explore their practice further on their website.