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TOTEM South Africa - How To Choose The Right School Bag

How To Choose The Correct Orthopaedic Bag

Bag Just Right

The age of the child usually determine what bag you choose.

Ages 6-9 years:
Select the medium size Orthopaedic schoolbag.
Ranges – Deluxe Orthopaedic or Amigo Orthopaedic.
Ages 10 years – young adult:
Select any of the large size Orthopaedic schoolbags.
Ranges – Style or Street or Hardbody.
Ages 10 years – adult:
Ranges – Ergonomic backpacks and all daypacks.

Bag Too Big

Do not make a mistake and choose the large size Totem bag for a small child. Some parents think it is financially viable to buy the big bag from the onset, as they will use the bag for many more years. However an oversized bag will not offer the Orthopaedic benefit and can have a negative effect, such as:
The lumber padding will not fit in the lower curve of the back, defeating the purpose of the support system.
The top of the bag will sit too high on the child’s head which will force the child to poke their head forward. This can cause neck strain.

How To Adjust Your Orthopaedic Schoolbag

How to Adjust the growth buckle

Take note of the "Growth Buckle" at the top end of the shoulder straps. Kids age 6 or 7 need this buckle to be in the full release position. Then check that the small webbing strap next to the growth buckle is taught. The bag can be adjusted to fit the growing child, by tightening the top growth buckle and releasing the buckle at the lower end of the shoulder straps. Choose the larger size Totem bag for kids age 10 or 11 years upwards.

How to fit the bag on your child's back

Place the bag close up on the child's back. Position the (lumber) or lower bag padding close up against the curve of the child’s lower back. Holding the bag in this position, against the child's back , adjust the shoulder straps to fit and feel comfortable. Tighten the slack on the buckle feature until the small webbing strap is taught.

Encourage your child to -

Always use both shoulder straps to benefit from the Orthopeadic design. This will help distribute the weight more evenly across both shoulders, along the length of the back muscles and position the lumber padding in the small of the back. Correct carrying will also prevent one sided loading on the spine.

Using only one shoulder strap over the long term, will cause uneven loading on the spine can result in one dropped shoulder or a curvature of the spine. It also defeats the purpose of using a bag with an Orthopeadic design.

Care Instructions

Always carry your Totem schoolbag using both shoulder straps. This will prevent future back problems. A backpack carried on one shoulder will load the spine unevenly which can lead to distorted posture and back problems. Check your Totem bag hangtag for maximum weight of contents.
Prevent zipper problems: Do not overstuff the compartments of your bag. Be careful not to catch anything in the zipper. Always stand Totem bags on the base in order to maintain the condition of the fabric and prevent wear and tear. Place your bag on the ground, do not throw . Do not place sharp unprotected items in your Totem bag, as they may pierce through the fabric.
Be careful not to smash the buckles in the car door or boot.
Do not leave your bag standing in direct extreme sun for long periods of time as this could lead to colour fading.

Washing Instructions

All Totem products are manufactured using high quality fabric.
The products are coated with a PU finish that helps repel dirt.
Wash your totem bags and pencil cases with a mild detergent
using a soft sponge.
Rinse with cool water and dry out of the sunlight.



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