To ascertain the health impact due to school bags a cross-sectional study on government and private school children (n=190, n=99 girls, n=91 boys) from the Chandrapur city, central India was carried out. These impacts were identified based on a specially designed and developed questionnaire. The results revealed that both shoulders exert pressure due to school bags (45.18% in government schools and 36.36% in private schools). The body pain according to their pain level is shoulder > neck > hand > back > foot. Back pain has been identified as a major effect of school bags on these students’ health. Fatigue due to lifting the bag is another issue reported by both government and private school students. The shoulder pain has been the major (~35%) reason for not carrying the school bag followed by neck pain (~25%). The severity of these impacts varies as per the affiliation of the school viz. government and private school. The students have visited the physician and took medicine to get relief from health ailments due to school bags. In addition to school bag, hours per day for doing homework, watching television or/and computer and position of homework at home may also be the factors responsible for health issues. To reduce the impact of school bags an inclusive policy taking into account different affiliated school types and their effective implementation is the need of the hour.
Key Words: Chandrapur, School bag, Student health