View Full Version : hipbelt cause grief

09-15-2008, 06:30
just got back from a 2 day hike and my hipbelt on my osprey aether has rubbed my hips raw and bruised them. I carried about 14kg of gear over the two days. what can i do to stop this happening? the hipbelt has been heat moulded also. are the hipbelts from the argon more comfortable? and would they fit an aether that was purchased december 2007?


09-15-2008, 07:38
Bruising is common if you haven't been hiking in a while. The solution is to hike more. Rubbing your hips raw is more unusual -- what were you wearing for shirt, pants, underwear? I suspect an article of clothing was rubbing under the hip belt and caused this chafing.

You also might try loosening the hipbelt slightly. It needs to be snug, but not so tight that it causes pain.

09-15-2008, 08:22
Back in the days of 40# to 50# packs bruising of the hips was very common. It usually lasted only 2 or 3 days, then eased up. It was usually at it's worst when first putting your pack on in the morning or after a break.

Since the advent of much lighter packs, I have not been troubled with sore hips (of course, I have a bit more of my own padding now than I used to). :D I would agree with bigcranky, look to some of your clothing as a possible culprit. If nothing is found there, then I would consider returning the pack to the dealer who heat molded it. It should not be rubbing you raw. that is a defect of some type. Good luck.

09-15-2008, 08:30
My guess is that the original poster is slender. I saw a young woman on the JMT with her hips rubbed raw. She wore a full piece of moleskin on each hip bone.

As others have suggested, lighten the load. Try some sort of friction reducer on your hips.


09-15-2008, 08:35
The hip bruising happens to me too... like someone said it usually goes away, and I find it's at it's worst on the 2nd and 3rd days. I find that making sure the outer strap, a tightening strap on my pack, needs to be tight, and then I can keep the front buckle strap a little looser. I don't know why but it helps

09-15-2008, 09:26
Is your hipbelt the right size for you? Are the waist areas on your shorts/shirt seamless?

Pedaling Fool
09-15-2008, 11:43
Never had a problem with bruising on the hips, but I have experienced belts rubbing them raw; this only happens to me when the temps go up and I sweat profusely. I hate spending money, so I just put up with it and wait for my body adjust, then all is good.

09-15-2008, 12:14
Bruising is caused by pressure which suggests too much weight. Chaffing, on the otherhand, is caused by motion which suggests an improper fit.

09-16-2008, 02:44
i think i might hav the hipbelt too tight. i thought it might stop the chaffing but it didnt it just caused bruising. the first day i wore a long sleeve fishing shirt made out of the quick dry material, and board shorts(not sure if thats what you call them in america) i didnt have raw hips they were just red and a little tender. the second day i wore a cotton shirt now i know that tha is a big no no but i dont have any other synthetic shirts. that might have caused it. and yes i am very skinny my hips bones have only a layer of skin over htem to protect them.


09-16-2008, 08:59
Most backpackers wear the same shirt every day, so, if the fishing shirt works, wear it. After a few days, when it gets so stinky that it even offends you, you can rinse it out (away from water source). Pin or tie it to the back of your pack to dry if it's a nice warm day.

Try hiking without a shirt. Might be better than a cotton shirt, but maybe not. I've never had a problem backpacking without a shirt, but others have.

As a last resort, your extra pair of wool socks, folded over and placed between hipbelt and hips can help a great deal. But try to find a better solution, this becomes a pain in the a$%. Good if an experiment doesn't work tho. :)

09-18-2008, 20:46
I've seen hikers put pads under their hipbelts for some more cushion. Walmart has a cheap yoga pad that works nicely.

09-19-2008, 06:58
I was wondering about the board shorts. Are you wearing them low enough that the waist band is under the hip belt? Do they have a draw string or elastic that is rolling under the hip belt?

09-19-2008, 11:08
Two things:

1. The elastic waistband of the board shorts might be bunching up. That said, I wear running shorts with elastic to hike, and don't have this problem.

2. Cotton fibers absorb water and becomes very abrasive when wet. Ask anyone who wears cotton underwear to hike on a hot day (bad idea, mate.) I wonder if the shirt did this to you?

Lyle is right, just wear the same shirt. Backpacker slogan: "Same shirt, different day."

09-19-2008, 19:54
the board shorts i wear dont have elastic or a draw cord, just a cord that is threaded through four holes in the front and then tightened.

Jason of the Woods
09-20-2008, 14:58
I prefer to wear mine tight, however I had a problem with my pants cutting into me. That is actually when I started wearing my kilt because of the smooth waistband as opposed to the elastic the a lot of hiking pants have around the waist. That may help a bit. You can find a few brands of regular pants with smooth waist bands if you aren't a fan of the Mountain Hardwear kilts.

09-20-2008, 18:11
ill have a look into seamless clothing but i think i'll pass on the kilt. i would cop so much crap its not funny

09-22-2008, 01:10
A lot of Mtn. Hardwear pants have a "conical" waist that is supposedly devoid of potentially painful seams and some have nice comfy lining on the inside around the waist. That's what I switched to years and years ago when I had the same problem.

09-22-2008, 07:25
Hike more & bring Mole skin (Lots)
I've had it happen to me I was coming South on the AT in VT on a 4/5 day trip in JULY with 100* temps.

09-22-2008, 10:34
I have seen it where people are carrying too much weight in the lower part of their pack. In other words the weight is distributed correctly. Just a thought. :)

09-22-2008, 18:53
I cut the ends off a pair of soft thick painting mitts from the hardware store and slid them on the hip belt. Looked odd but worked great.