Does it ever feel like you carry around everything you own in your purse? Though it’s nice to be prepared for any situation that might arise, carrying all that stuff can actually be hazardous to your health.
How Heavy is Too Heavy? It all depends on how much you weigh. You shouldn’t be carrying a purse that weighs any more than 10% of your body weight. Ideally, though, you purse should way under 10 pounds regardless of the number on the scale.
What are the Consequences of Lugging Around All That Stuff? There are several. For one, too heavy of a load can lead to neck, shoulder and back pain. Your muscles become stiffer, your joints become strained, and it throws off your natural posture and gait. All of these problems can lead to headaches, leg and knee pain, and even arthritis.
How Can I Prevent Injury?
- This one’s a no brainer: don’t carry around so much stuff! Pare down your purse to just the basics, and take time each week to clean it out.
- Switch it up. To avoid straining one side more than the other, regularly switch the arm you carry your bag on.
- Embrace versatility. Look for purses with several options for strap length — and actually use them!
- Use a purse with a wide strap. The wider the strap, the more evenly the weight of the bag is distributed across your body — and the lower your risk of injury.
- Find a new style. Backpacks are a great alternative. Going retro? Coming in third are messenger bags, as long as they’re worn diagonally across the body.