IS THE FITTING OF YOUR BACKPACK IMPORTANT?
Don’t you just hate it when you’re wearing a backpack yet you feel like there’s a yoke around your shoulders, all the way down to your back? Think of the discomfort and the ensuing pain that you will have to deal with, because it will happen, mark my words. Not to mention the long-term effects on your posture, your back, shoulders and hips. Aside from comfort considerations, a perfect fit of the backpack would also ensure you won’t be jeopardizing your overall health.
HOW TO ADJUST THE FIT – A STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE
Before anything else, make sure you have a backpack that fits your torso length and waist and hip measurements.
- Step 1: With all the pack’s straps and the hipbelt loosened, put the pack on your back with the hipbelt hanging over your hip bones. Buckle up the hipbelt really tight, making sure the padded sections are snugly encasing your hips. Maintain at least 1” free space on both sides of the buckle.
- Step 2: Tighten the shoulder straps by pulling on their ends. Make sure they fit snugly around your shoulder and keeping the pack closely against your back. Check that the anchor points are around an inch or two below the top of your shoulders.
IMPORTANT: the shoulder straps should not be carrying the weight of the pack.
- Step 3: Check that the load lifters or the straps found near the collarbones, just below your shoulders, are at a 45-degree angle towards the pack. Pull the weight off your shoulders by moderately tightening it.
IMPORTANT: Do Not tighten too much that, because there would be a gap between your shoulders and the shoulder straps.
- Step 4: Sternum straps should be at mid-chest level. Buckle up and pull until the shoulder straps are comfortably tight yet still allowing you to move your arms freely.
- Step 5: Stabilizer straps are found on both sides of the hipbelt. Pull them snugly toward the hipbelt to stabilize the pack’s load.
- Step 6: For the final tweak, carefully ease some tension off the shoulder straps. Now, you are all set.
ADJUST YOUR BACKPACK AND HIT THE TRAIL
Adjusting the fit of your backpack is not that difficult. You only have to be familiar with your backpack’s various features and what they are for. At the end of the day, exercise your judgment whether you are comfortable with the fit of your backpack.