Backpacks_ sizing and fit – rei expert advice

Above all else, the best backpack for you is the one that fits your body the best. The italian homemade company san francisco One of the keys to finding that right backpack is to get one that is the correct size (e.g., small, medium, large). Italian homemade bread recipe Your torso length—not your height—is the key measurement.

This article gives steps for measuring at home. Homemade meatballs crockpot Your best resource, though, is a pack-fit expert at your local REI store. Italian homemade company menu Store experts can visually assess your unique fit needs and work through them with you.

This article also covers how to adjust the fit of your new pack and suggests tweaks to manage comfort as you hike.


For help in deciding which backpack’s capacity and features will best serve your needs on the trail, read Backpacks: How to Choose.

In order to accurately determine this key spec, you’ll need a friend and a flexible tape measure.

• Tilt your head forward and feel for the bony bump where the slope of your shoulders meets your neck. Homemade meatballs with grape jelly and chili sauce This is your 7th cervical (or C7) vertebra—and the top of your torso length.

• On each side of your body, slide your hands down the ribcage to the top of your hip bones (aka the iliac crest). The italian homemade company sf With index fingers pointing forward and thumbs pointing backward, draw an imaginary line between your thumbs. Homemade bbq meatballs crockpot This spot on your lumbar is the bottom of your torso measurement.

• Stand up straight and have your friend measure the distance between the C7 and the imaginary line between your thumbs. The italian homemade company menu That’s your torso length.

REI.com product pages list torso ranges for each pack size. Best homemade halloween costumes 2016 Torso ranges for pack sizes vary between brands and models, so always check the size chart for any pack you are considering. Easy homemade dog treats with peanut butter If you fall between sizes, visit an REI store to try on each size. Homemade italian meatballs In addition, because home measurement is rarely perfect, your best fit will always come if you physically try on backpacks.

While it’s rare for a pack’s waist/hips sizing to be off if your pack size is correct for your torso length, it’s still important to check your hip measurement. Homemade meatballs recipe You’ll be carrying most of your pack weight on your hips, so good hipbelt fit is critical.

To measure your hip size, wrap your tape measure around the top of your hips, hugging the iliac crest you found when measuring your torso length. Homemade baked meatballs This line is slightly higher than your beltline, so hipbelt size differs slightly from pant-waist size.

Double check on REI.com to be sure the waist/hip measurement on your chosen pack size is right for you. Homemade meatballs for spaghetti If not, call your nearest REI store to find out about interchangeable hipbelt options.

Found on a lot of packs, adjustable suspension enables a pack to fit a wider range of torso lengths and to more precisely fit individual users. Homemade meatballs easy Different brands use different systems, but most of them are fairly intuitive. Homemade meatballs and sauce If you buy a pack with this feature, torso length is your first—and most important—fit adjustment.

If your other fit adjustments don’t seem to work correctly, re-check and reset the torso length. Recipe for homemade meatballs Adjustment straps can’t compensate for an incorrectly set adjustable suspension system. Homemade beef meatballs If you’re having trouble, bring the pack to an REI store for help.

Your new backpack has several straps to adjust your load for greater comfort. Meatballs homemade Your legs have some of the strongest muscles in your body, so the goal is to adjust your straps so that the majority of the load rests on your hips.

Start with about 15 pounds of weight in the pack to simulate a load. Homemade bbq meatballs You’ll also need your friend or a mirror to help you check the fit after each adjustment step. Homemade italian meatballs baked Loosen all of the adjustment straps slightly before you start.

In addition, because fit adjustment is a dynamic process, experienced hikers continuously work to relieve pressure points by fiddling with the tension in their straps (the encore).

• Put the pack on. Homemade spaghetti meatballs Move the hipbelt until the padding hugs the top of your hip bones (your iliac crest). How to make homemade meatballs If it sits too low or too high, tighten or loosen the shoulder straps to raise or lower the hipbelt.

• Fasten the hipbelt buckle and tighten it. Cooking homemade meatballs Be careful not to overtighten the belt: It should be snug and secure without uncomfortably pinching your hips.

• Check the padded sections of the hipbelt to make sure they sit on the top of your hips; if not, readjust your shoulder straps and hipbelt. Homemade easy meatballs Try different tensions until you find the sweet spot.

• Belt padding should extend slightly beyond the front point of your hipbones. Easy homemade meatballs You also need at least one inch of clearance on either side of the center buckle: If you have less, call REI to see if a smaller belt is available.

• Pull down and back on the ends of the shoulder straps to tighten them.

• Shoulder straps should wrap closely around your shoulders, but they should NOT be carrying significant weight. Italian homemade meatballs If they are, you’ll be putting undue stress on shoulder, neck and upper-back muscles.

• Check to see that the shoulder strap anchor points on your pack are 1 to 2 inches below the top of your shoulders, roughly at the top of your shoulder blades. Homemade meatballs in sauce If not, then either your hipbelt is at the wrong level or your pack’s torso length is incorrect.

• Vary shoulder-strap tension by tightening and loosening the straps. Homemade pork meatballs Learn how to adjust the straps in small increments so you can relieve any pressure points or pain during your hike.

• Load-lifter straps connect the top of the shoulder harness to an anchor point near the top of the back panel. Homemade meatballs with ground beef When tensioned, they should angle back toward the pack body at roughly a 45-degree angle.

• Don’t overtighten the load lifters! Excess tension that feels great initially can pinch shoulder joints and create discomfort. Homemade sauce and meatballs Strive for snug—not stiff—tension. Baking homemade meatballs If you notice a space at the top of your shoulder harness, loosen the load lifters and try again.

• Slide the sternum strap until it’s at a comfortable height across your chest: roughly an inch below your collarbones.

• Buckle and tighten the sternum strap to set the shoulder straps at a width that allows your arms to move freely.

• Avoid the common mistake of overtightening the sternum strap. Homemade spaghetti meatballs recipe This can distort the overall fit of your harness, constrict your chest muscles and restrict your breathing.

After mile 10, your near-perfect fit can seem like a distant memory. Homemade beef meatballs recipe Good fit, though, requires continuous attention on the trail.

• Master how things adjust by playing with all of your straps extensively when you first get your pack.

• Ensure you can always return to your preferred fit by memorizing what that looks like at home.

• Tweak adjustment straps as you hike to alleviate aches, pains and pressure points. Homemade meatballs and spaghetti Trial and error will tell you what works best for your pack and your body.

• A common tactic to manage load fatigue is to tighten the shoulder straps and loosen the hipbelt, then reverse those steps later.

• Be aware of body position: Leaning slightly forward will make the load feel more in balance.

• Take your pack off whenever you stop for a break. Homemade meatballs oven That gives your hard-working back a chance to rest and breathe while you stretch out overworked muscles.

We stand behind everything we sell. Delicious homemade meatballs If you are not satisfied with your REI purchase, you can return it for a replacement or refund within one year of purchase.

REI’s guarantee doesn’t cover ordinary wear and tear or damage caused by improper use or accidents.

If your item has a manufacturing defect in its materials or workmanship, you can return it at any time. Homemade baked meatballs recipe See our limited warranty. Homemade meatballs and pasta Gear & advice you can trust

At REI, we live and breathe the outdoors, and we’re passionate about sharing our expertise with people of all skill levels. Homemade meatballs and sauce recipe Whether you’re new to the outdoors or a seasoned explorer, we’ll take the time to understand your needs and help you find the right gear for you. Baked homemade meatballs 10% annual member refund

Anyone can shop at REI, but for a one-time $20 fee you can become an REI member and enjoy a lifetime of benefits. Homemade pork meatballs recipe These include an annual member refund, typically 10% back on eligible purchases.*

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