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  1. #1
    \(^.^)/ Jennifer's Avatar
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    Default Article: Rise of the killer bags

    Article: Rise of the killer bags

    Supersize totes may be all the rage, but should they come with a health warning? CLAIRE COLEMAN is sure we will all be suffering for style this season.

    The concept of suffering for beauty is nothing new, but this season it looks like we're all going to be suffering for fashion. And we're not just talking about the perils that being perennially stylish can pose to your bank balance, but about the damage that your passion for fashion could be doing to your health.


    It seems that super-sizing your handbag could be as potentially problematic as super-sizing your McDonalds. This week chiropractors said that they were seriously considering issuing a medical warning after seeing a noticeable increase in the number of 'heavy handbag related injuries'.


    The problem, it seems, is not just that the handbags themselves are painfully heavy, draped and bedecked as they are with more bling than a rapper's convention, but also that their capacious depths, with room not only to carry a cat, but to swing one too, encourage us to fill them with endless amounts of stuff.


    A recent study discovered that women today carry twice as much in their handbags as our mothers used to. While mum might have had a coin purse, a powder compact, a couple of tissues and a house key, we're now toting a whopping great wallet/diary/address book Filofax affair, an entire make-up bag and a bottle of water, plus great bunches of keys for the house, the office and the car. And that's before we get to all the gadgets and gizmos - MP3 players, mobile phones, laptops etc.


    According to social anthropologist, Kate Fox, of the Social Issues Research Centre in Oxford, our love of large luggage isn't just down to fashion. "Larger women generally prefer to carry a big bag as it makes their bum look smaller in comparison. And, the fashionably petite like to emphasise their size zero status by carrying an outsize bag." No wonder skinny minnies like Mary-Kate Olsen and Posh are always dragging around handbags the size of houses.


    Of course overfilling your enormous bag is all well and good if you're a celebrity, like Sienna or Kate, with a million minions running around after you and a limo waiting to whisk you from door to door, but what about the rest of us? Well, until British Rail start introducing porters as standard, or it becomes acceptable to commandeer small children as slaves, we're lumbered with dragging the equivalent of a small suitcase over our shoulders as we schlepp around town.


    "The problem with carrying a heavy bag is that while it may not cause you an injury at the time you carry it, over time it has a cummulative effect, and we're certainly seeing more instances of back pain triggered as a result," says Tim Hutchful of the British Chiropractic Association.


    "The worst case scenario is that you injure your neck by stretching the nerves. But carrying a heavy bag over one shoulder also causes you to totally shift your body's stance as you hike the shoulder up and, over time, this can shorten the muscles resulting in a twisted or lop-sided body position, that in turn can lead to back pain."
    Ladies, you have been warned...


    BAG CARRYING FOR BEGINNERS
    If you're absolutely adamant that you're going to become a fully paid-up member of the big bag brigade, here's how to do it:


    Start out by minimising how much stuff youíre putting in your bag. Do you really need a litre of water with you at all times? Ditch anything you donít need and then think about how you carry your bag.


    "Ideally the load should be distributed evenly across your body, which means using something like a rucksack. The second best option is to wear a bag that you carry across your body like a satchel," says Tim Hutchful. If, however, you're toting a tote, this isn't really going to be practical, instead try to carry your bag as close to your body as possible.


    "Carrying your bag in the crook of your arm is one of the worst possible places you can carry it as it's further away from your centre of gravity so it puts more strain on the body. If you hold something at arm's length, the pressure it puts on the body is five times greater than if you were carrying it close to your chest."


    Staying mobile by exercising regularly is also advisable (presumably carrying your gym stuff in a rucksack rather than your big bag). "If youíve got toned abs and a strong core from exercise like pilates, youíre much less likely to hurt yourself," says Hutchful.


    Then, itís a question of balance. "If youíre walking down the road with a huge bag on your shoulder, a mobile tucked under your chin and youíre wearing a pair of 4" stilettos, youíre just asking for trouble because you havenít got a stable base so youíre going to be straining the body.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Article: Rise of the killer bags

    I had a huge LV tote I carried around and I tended to carry too many items. I had to give it a rest for six months at a time to cure my back. I have learned though and don't carry around so many items.

  3. #3
    i love myself bagluvah's Avatar
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    Default Re: Article: Rise of the killer bags

    that's why i don't carry huge bags anymore.... bad scoliosis!

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