Sizing me up

With shoes ordered and on the way, it was time last night to order my backpack. I’ve had my eye on the ULA Catalyst since reading about the ULA brand in Wired’s blog. She envied the hikers who carried them on the PCT in 2011 and I was happy to see she’s got the ULA Circuit for her CDT hike.

When I clicked on the tab to order my pack I was faced with a number of options: torso size, hipbelt and shoulder strap curve shape. How do you measure your torso size? I Googled this question and watched a video from REI which told me the following:

  • Have a friend (or your mum and dad) locate the bony bump at the base of your neck, where the slope of your shoulder meets your neck. This is your 7th cervical (or C7) vertebra. Tilt your head forward to locate it more easily. This is the top of your torso length.
  • Place your hands on top of your hips. The location on your spine between the tops of your hip bones is the bottom of your torso length. With your hands comfortably on your hips, it is the location your thumbs point to.
  • Using a flexible tape measure, your friend should measure the distance between the C7 and an imaginary line drawn between your thumbs. You now should have your torso length.
Me torso measure

Mum and dad sizing up my torso length.

I discovered that my torso size is 19″ and my hipbelt size is 35.5″ which means I’m a medium size for both. The excitement of torso measuring soon spread throughout my family and everyone had a turn at discovering their torso length.

Kalya torso measure

My sister measured in a torso length of 20″ after discovering she has a pronounced C7 vertebra.

Then I was stumped by the shoulder strap – J curve or S curve? I realised I would have to do a bit more reading before making my selection.

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