Want to prevent backpack from back pain then get a rucksack with a proper hip belt. A hip belt transfers up to 80-90% of your backpack’s weight from your shoulders to your hips. For a 22 lb travel or picnic backpack, that means 17.6 lbs is magically lifted from your shoulders.
Hip Belt Material Matters
Now that you’re eying travel backpacks with hip belts, think carefully about their purpose and what they are (or should be) made of. Pick a travel backpack with a solid, functional hip belt. In other words: not made of mesh or woven strapping. Adding a flimsy strap to a travel backpack and calling it a “hip belt” doesn’t do much for weight transfer. Those kinds of belts are just for stabilizing your backpack against your back so that it doesn’t flop around while you’re walking. This improves the carry experience on a daypack, but doesn’t actually transfer any weight. For a travel backpack that you are going to load up and carry, look for a hip belt well padded with foam for and thick enough to actually transfer the weight, while remaining comfortable on your body. A good hip belt needs to feel sturdy.
Look for a hip belt that:
- Is at least 2” wide
- Has plenty of foam padding to improve comfort
- Has pockets (keep your much needed items in there!)
- Has thick, sturdy straps and buckles
Which picnic backpack is best for those with back pain?
I recommend the following three travel backpacks for those of us who suffer back pain. They are lightweight, and have well padded straps and hip belts to make sure weight is distributed evenly. Want to take it for picnicking then you can add in great picnic sets like those below and a water bottle from our top three too!