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How to fit a backpack to prevent hip pain?

Good morning, I was out backpacking in the Sipsey Wilderness with my son's boyscout troop this weekend and ran into something I haven't encountered before.  We were on a relatively short (3 mile out/3 mile back) overnight and I was using a new Traverse 85 (pack weight was 40 pounds, I'm 6" and relatively fit).  After about 1/4 mile both ways, I ran started experiencing a relatively dull ache at the outside of both hips.  I also noticed that the pack constantly slipped about an inch from what I considered comfortable (iliac crest).  Is the ache common with a pack that doesn't fit quite right?

1 Reply

@coxmikecox Thanks for reaching out!

We're sorry you experienced hip pain on your trip. You are on the right track in regards to needing the correct fit for your backpack. We encourage you to head into your local REI store and have your pack fitted to your back. That is the best way to explore all the different ways you can adjust a pack to relieve any issues you are experiencing.

Based on the information you've provided, we would recommend starting with the torso length of the pack. Often times if the torso length of pack is not adjusted correctly it can cause the pack to slip down lower on your hips and lead to issues there. To learn more about backpack fit, check out this Expert Advice article.

Lastly, it is good to remember that even a half-inch of adjustment in the torso length of a pack can have a huge impact on your comfort on the trail. If you've got the right size of pack, it is a relatively easy process to get it adjusted correctly once you know your torso length. We have tools in store to get your torso length measured easily, otherwise there are some tips in that Expert Advice article above.

Hope this helps!

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