No matter who you are or what you do, a proper fitting back pack is a must have. There are hundreds of different styles of backpacks today. You can buy a day pack, travel pack or baby backpack. If you need packs for your children, you can buy a school backpack. Busy professional? No worries. Why not try laptop backpacks, computer backpacks or notebook backpacks. You can even buy skateboard backpacks and picnic backpacks thanks to the wide range of styles available.
A back pack is only as good as it’s fit however. You may have the right pack but the wrong fit. This is a recipe for disaster! Why do you need to fit your pack? An ill fitting pack can result in short term and long term back pain and injury. Who is most at risk? Children! Did you know that 40 million children will wear back packs every year? Many of those put too much in the pack or sling a pack over one shoulder. Those are definite no nos!
Tips For Proper Fit
After you buy your back pack, you should make sure it fits properly. Here are some tips to help you establish a good fit:
Buy a pack with wide, padded shoulder straps. The thinner the straps, the less comfortable. You are more likely to wear a pack incorrectly if it is not comfortable.
Make sure the straps are long enough. You may need a pack with extra length if you are very tall.
Never put more weight in a pack than you can comfortably carry. You should carry roughly 15 percent of your weight or less in a pack. Any more and your posture will change to accommodate the weight load. This can result in back strain and injury.
Position your pack low on your back. You should never wear your pack too high. This can increase shoulder and neck pain.
Adjust the hip belt correctly. Your pack should rest right above your hip bones. For smaller packs, the hipbelt serves as a bounce reducer. It helps keep the pack comfortably in place. For larger packs, the hip belt also helps distribute the weight load more evenly.
Use both straps to carry your pack. This is a must especially for children, who have a tendency to fling their pack over one shoulder. Using just one strap increases the amount of back pain and discomfort you are likely to experience.
Typically if you are able to stand up straight and comfortably when using your pack, you have a good fit.
How To “Pack” Your Sack
Most people mistakenly believe they should place the heaviest objects they need to carry in the bottom of their backpack. This is not the case. You need to try to distribute weight throughout your pack. Most heavy items do best toward the middle of your pack, closest to your back. If you place too many heavy objects toward the top or outside of your pack, your posture will shift to accommodate the added burden. Don’t forget to secure the hipbelt to help distribute the weight of your pack more evenly.
When packing your sack, always place your “must have” items toward the top of your satchel (provided they aren’t too heavy). This will add much convenience to your life. You don’t want to grab a quick snack or sip of water only to find your water bottle buried under a day’s supply of socks, towels and underwear. Convenience is key.
If you have a lot of bulky items to carry like a pot or pan, be sure to pad them well. You can wrap them in your clothes so they don’t stick out and irritate your back while carrying them.
Don’t forget to put any products that might leak, like lotions or gels, in small zip lock bags. Nothing is worse than a day of hiking only to find your lotion spilled all over your change of clothes!
Remember, a back pack is the number one multi-purpose carry all. Even if you are a business executive you’ll find a sack much more comfortable than a traditional suitcase, especially when fitted properly.
About The Author:
Antigone Arthur is a successful freelance writer with 10 years of professional experience providing consumers with informative articles on such topics as