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    Registered User SoaknWet's Avatar
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    Any hikers out there hiking and using a backpack with a pacemaker? Tuesday I had to have a pacemaker put in and when discussing my goals with the doctor I mentioned I like to hike and can't wait to get started again, well he informed me that the use of a backpack might not work. I explained the weight rides on your hip not shoulders but he said it's the strap movement or rubbing that's dangerous. Any advice will be appreciated.

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    Registered User IslandPete's Avatar
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    No pacemaker, but I have a plate and 10 screws over the top of my collarbone. Thought it was likely to be an issue. It wasn’t...

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    Met a guy on the AT with one of these packs because he had a pacemaker. No idea how well it works but he said he had no problems.

    https://www.aarnpacks.com/#!naturally-balanced/cjg9
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    Travel not for the destination, but for the joy of the journey.

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    Registered User Water Rat's Avatar
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    While I personally do not have experience with this issue, I have heard of others using an Aarn pack. I have also heard of others having a positive experience with PaceGuard. (https://www.paceguard.com/). Perhaps a combo of the two might work? Or, maybe taking some foam and attaching it to the underside of your pack straps, creating an air gap over the spot of your pacemaker?

    The weight of your pack should ride on your hips, but it also depends on how you pack your pack (a pack that is top-heavy will pull a pack backwards) and the amount of weight you are carrying in your pack.

    As the site heals, you might want to experiment with the gear you already have. That might give you a better idea of your specific needs. Get a feel for what works/doesn't feel right before you hit the trail, or spend a lot of money. Sometimes there are easy solutions to be found.

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    Registered User SoaknWet's Avatar
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    Thanks guys. That pace guard definitely has my hopes up, will be talking to my doctor about it. Also found a site in UK that has pack carriers on wheels that you pull behind you, kind of looks like a DOLLY. I'm not giving up even if I have to learn to ride a bicycle.

  6. #6

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    I've had a PM for 12 yrs now. I'm skinny and have had no problems. I use ULA and Zpack. Just see what works, no need to overthink it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SoaknWet View Post
    Thanks guys. That pace guard definitely has my hopes up, will be talking to my doctor about it. Also found a site in UK that has pack carriers on wheels that you pull behind you, kind of looks like a DOLLY. I'm not giving up even if I have to learn to ride a bicycle.
    Keep in mind that some trails do not allow wheeled carts. I know Great Smoky Mountains National Park doesn't allow carts on the AT thru the park.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SoaknWet View Post
    Any hikers out there hiking and using a backpack with a pacemaker? Tuesday I had to have a pacemaker put in and when discussing my goals with the doctor I mentioned I like to hike and can't wait to get started again, well he informed me that the use of a backpack might not work. I explained the weight rides on your hip not shoulders but he said it's the strap movement or rubbing that's dangerous. Any advice will be appreciated.
    The owner of PATAGONIA outdoor gear ( Yvon Chouinard ), has a semi serious back problem. He uses a "Trump Line" to take the weight off of his shoulders / hips and moves it directly to his head / spine.
    https://www.patagonia.com/stories/on...ory-18753.html
    Patagonia use to sell a Trump Line but I can no longer find it in the on their web page. You use to have to hunt for it.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tumpline

    It seems like someone could simply make one with some flat webbing.
    https://farm3.staticflickr.com/2628/...8a0_z.jpg?zz=1
    I would bet that Yvon Chouinard would respond to a letter / email.

    Good luck.
    Last edited by yaduck9; 05-19-2020 at 09:58.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IslandPete View Post
    No pacemaker, but I have a plate and 10 screws over the top of my collarbone. Thought it was likely to be an issue. It wasn’t...
    Wow. Same story here, but only 7 screws. An obvious bump on the clavicle right under where the strap rides. It's rarely a problem, and when it is, it's minor and moving the strap cures it.
    I'm not lost. I'm exploring.

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    Registered User hikermiker's Avatar
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    I have a pacemaker. The doctor knew that I am a hiker so he put it to the right as much as possible. I have had it for over 6 months. I go dayhiking most days and have been backpacking twice and have had no problems. I use a variety of packs.

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    Registered User SoaknWet's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info. A different nurse came Friday to check everything which is healing good. She also said she felt the other nurse was being over caution. She had several people under her care with pacemakers that hike with backpacks and had no problems, just be careful and use common sense.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by SoaknWet View Post
    Any hikers out there hiking and using a backpack with a pacemaker? Tuesday I had to have a pacemaker put in and when discussing my goals with the doctor I mentioned I like to hike and can't wait to get started again, well he informed me that the use of a backpack might not work. I explained the weight rides on your hip not shoulders but he said it's the strap movement or rubbing that's dangerous. Any advice will be appreciated.
    My wife has a pacemaker and hikes with a backpack almost everyday. She has adjusted the pack so the strap is not directly on top of the pacemaker, but has had no problems with it. She is thin so the pacemaker is very obvious. If it isn't a problem for her, it wouldn't be a problem for most people.
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