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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    How can I relieve soreness after carrying a heavy backpack?

    I like to go hiking and often go on 10-12 hour hikes with a heavy pack – can’t be too good for the neck! Any suggestions besides stretching afterward? Are there any long-term consequences of this?
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  • 1




    Tim Shackleford


    At Back in Motion Campbelltown we want to help you find long-term solutions to your problems. We'll assess your problem for free, so it costs … View Profile

    Quite often when you wear a heavy backpack that is poorly designed or that isn’t packed properly, it does put a lot of strain on the neck muscles. So the best first step is to pack your backpack with the heaviest items down below and close to your spine.

    If you can, try to get a backpack with a waist strap. The strap should fit over your iliac crests which are the bones of your pelvis that you can feel when you put your hands on your waist. Get a backpack with straps that are wide and if possible, that have an external strap that joins them together in front, as well.

    That will make it easier to carry the load so that some of the weight is not born by your shoulders but by your pelvis. As I said, pack the lighter items at the top and the heavier items at the bottom. There are long term consequences if the shoulder muscles are getting stretched and sore all the time. The best way to avoid that is an appropriate backpack.

  • 4


    Dr Ryan Hislop


    Ryan Hislop is the Clinical Director at the Mudgee Chiropractic Health and Wellness Centre. As an experienced and evidence-based diagnostician, Ryan works largely by medical … View Profile

    This short video may provide some tips

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