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Courage Kenny Kids offers free advice for healthy backpacks

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. 9/15/2016 — Backpacks are a school essential these days, but a recent study says that more than half of kids carry too much weight. Wednesday, September. 21, Courage Kenny Kids physical and occupational therapists will weigh backpacks and offer information and safety tips.

Parents and children can drop by for quick, free backpack assessments at Courage Kenny Kids locations in Buffalo, Burnsville, Coon Rapids, Forest Lake, Golden Valley, New Ulm, Owatonna and two sites in Stillwater. Staff will also be happy to weigh parents' briefcases and purses.

The American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) recommends that children carry 10 percent or less of their body weight in a backpack. For example, if a child is 60 pounds, the backpack should weigh six pounds or less.

Backpacks worn incorrectly or that are too heavy for a child can result in back pain, strain or back injury. In 2013, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reported that nearly 22,200 strains, sprains, dislocations and fractures from backpack use were treated in hospital emergency rooms, physicians' offices and clinics.

About Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute

Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute, part of Allina Health, was created in 2013 by the merger of Courage Center and Sister Kenny Rehabilitation Institute. The Institute provides a continuum of rehabilitation services for people with short- and long-term conditions, injuries and disabilities in communities throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin. Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute has multiple locations, and numerous programs and services. For more information visit

About Allina Health

Allina Health is dedicated to the prevention and treatment of illness and enhancing the greater health of individuals, families and communities throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin. A not-for-profit health care system, Allina Health cares for patients from beginning to end-of-life through its 90+ clinics, 11 hospitals, 15 retail pharmacies, specialty care centers and specialty medical services, home care, and emergency medical transportation services.