Professional rucksack fitting service at BCH Camping

Rucksacks come in all shapes and sizes, not unlike the people who carry them. Matching the most suitable rucksack to backpacker is not dissimilar to finding the perfect relationship – it needs to be a good fit, because if it’s not it could lead to all sorts of bother!
So, to avoid the “it’s not you, it’s me” conversation, BCH Camping stock a wide range of daysacks and rucksacks so that regardless of the customer’s size and proportions, there will be one true rucksack for everyone. We stock rucksacks from a variety of suppliers such as Lowe Alpine, Berghaus and Jack Wolfsin etc., across a range of litre capacities. There is also a range of women’s rucksacks that have a shorter back system and slightly wider coverage for the hips, making them more comfortable to carry.

Why do rucksacks come in so many different sizes?

Your choice of rucksack will firstly be determined by how much you need to put in it. If you are camping and need to take equipment, you will need a higher capacity rucksack than if you are going on a one-day hike.
Once you have decided how much capacity you need, you need to choose the right size of rucksack for you, because one size does not fit all. If you carry a rucksack that is out of proportion for your body shape you could be setting off on a very uncomfortable journey. This is why it is always recommended that you take expert advice on what size of rucksack is best for your physique, and the maximum weight that you should carry.

BCH Camping provide a professional rucksack fitting service

The correct fitting of a rucksack is hugely important to make sure you don’t pick up injuries.
We obviously want customers to come back to us again and again, but we want them to do so fit as fiddles, not walking in complaining of back problems caused by having carried a rucksack that they’ve fitted incorrectly.
All our staff are fully trained to provide a professional rucksack fitting service. We spend time with customers working out their requirements and trying different rucksacks, and then fit their chosen rucksack correctly. We’re also happy to provide a rucksack fitting service for anyone who brings in their own rucksack. It’s so important to get it right, and we like to have many happy customers enjoying lovely walks while also protecting themselves.

I can’t get to your shop. How do I fit the rucksack correctly myself?

We realise that not everybody can benefit from coming into one of our stores to have a rucksack professionally fitted, so we’ve put together a guide so that you can fit your own rucksack.

The DIY rucksack fitting guide

  • Loosen the straps
The first thing you need to do is loosen all the straps so that it will be easier for you to tighten them correctly later
  • Put some weight on!
You won’t be carrying your rucksack empty, so to get as true a fitting as possible, you may want to fill the rucksack with the typical items you would be carrying, before tightening any straps. Once you’ve filled the rucksack, put it on your back. It will be hanging freely at this stage.
  • Position the hip strap
Fitting the hit strap correctly is extremely important because your hips should carry most of the weight, rather than putting strain on the shoulders.
To make sure the back length is correct, you need to align the hip strap correctly.
Men – the top of the hip strap should sit in line with the top of the hip
Women – sometimes it is preferable for the middle of the hip strap to sit in line with the top of the hip, whilst others prefer for it to fit in the same way as a man’s
  • Fit the hip strap
Tighten the hip strap to keep the rucksack in position. You may need to adjust the shoulder straps to do this. Don’t over-tighten as the straps could dig in and cause discomfort
  • Adjust the shoulder straps
The rucksack should sit comfortably in line with your back. Tighten the shoulder straps but not so much that you transfer the weight from your hips to the shoulders
  • Stabiliser straps
If your rucksack has top stabiliser straps, tighten them to help pull the rucksack even closer to your back. They should sit approximately 30 - 45° off the top of the shoulder
  • Fasten the sternum strap
Also known as the chest strap, this adds stability by preventing the shoulder straps from moving apart while you’re walking. Adjust it so that it sits in line with your arm pit, and fasten it at a comfortable tension that allows you to take deep breaths without feeling constrained
  • Hip belt stabiliser
This is an additional feature found on some rucksacks. It is designed to pull the weight of the pack towards the body to stop the rucksack moving around. Simply fasten the belt to a comfortable position
Following the above guide will avoid adding unnecessary pressure to your back, shoulders or knees which will leave you free to wander with a smile on your face, as far as your feet are happy to take you.
We’re always happy to help with any questions, so do get in touch if we can help in any way. We also like to receive comments about our blogs so if you’d like to give us any feedback, please do!