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How to adjust a backpack

Product guide - 4 min. read

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It’s time to go hiking and you’ve packed your backpack with things that are both useful and great to have with you. When you put on your backpack, before setting off, remember to adjust your backpack properly. Here's how:

A properly adjusted backpack is much more comfortable to wear. Proper adjustment not only makes you feel less tired and enables you to wear your backpack for longer, it also gives you more energy to enjoy your trip. Try to get into a habit of adjusting your backpack before every trip. That way, you’ll always have a backpack that is adapted to the weight of the backpack and the clothes you are wearing.

No two backpacks are alike, but backpacks of a certain quality (regardless of brand) often have the following adjustment points:

• Hip belt

• Shoulder straps

• Chest strap

• Top tension straps

Adjusting your backpack:

The first thing to do once you have put on the backpack is to loosen all the straps well. Remember to do the top tension straps as well, as these are easy to forget.

A handy tip is to always loosen all the straps every time you take your backpack off. This makes it easier to remove the backpack and adjusting it will seem completely natural when you put it on again.

We will start at the bottom and work our way up one adjustment at a time.

1. Hip belt

Fasten the hip belt. This should sit so that the padding extends slightly above the top of your hip bone. As a general rule, the upper third of the belt should be over your hip bone.

2. Shoulder strap

The shoulder straps should follow the upper back roughly from the middle of the shoulder blades and arch nicely over the shoulders. There should be no gap between the shoulder straps and your body.

If it is difficult to get the shoulder straps to follow your shoulder, you may have forgotten to loosen the top tension straps, or the back length of your backpack may be set incorrectly.

3. Chest strap

The rule of thumb here is that the strap should be in line between the shoulder joints. The job of the chest strap is to give the arms freedom to move by pulling the shoulder straps slightly towards each other and away from your armpits.

4. Top tension straps

Tighten the top tension straps. This pulls the upper part of the backpack towards the body, causing the center of gravity to move forward and making it easier for you to keep your balance.

There, now you have a backpack that fits perfectly. You can also make a few small adjustments as you walk if you need to.

Good hiking!

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