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Lumbar support while sitting in a tent, take-2

February 24, 2021 — BarryK

Having a degenerated lower vertebrae, that can slide out of position if the posture is wrong, it is a challenge for me to camp in a small tent. Sitting cross-legged in the tent, the spine has to be kept erect, which becomes tiring after awhile.

A possible solution is some kind of mechanical bracing. There is a product called the "Ah Chair", that I considered, and also tested a leverage system with a rope tied to the pant belt:

Neither of those were comfortable for me. So, thought about how the body sits and balances while cross-legged, and came up with another solution...

I purchased this shoulder strap, and it arrived today:

img1 particular, notice the end fittings. I chose this belt because of those fittings. They will click onto cloth loops, which in turn will loop over the knees.

Fetched ancient jeans from the garden shed and cut two loops off a leg, and here it is, lumbar support solution take-2:


It works! fairly comfortable, the body feels balanced, no stresses sitting like this. Only sat there for 10 minutes and the jury is still out as to whether it is good for longer periods.

The very fact of being cross-legged is a strain on the knees, and even if the back is successfully propped up, pain in the knees will still limit the duration of sitting.

The belt is adjusted to total length of 96cm, much less than the maximum that it can be adjusted to.

My first thought was to loop the ends of the belt, so that separate cloth loops are not needed, but the belt is not long enough. It might work with a child or very small adult.

The cloth loops are approximately 15cm diameter. Tonight I plan to sew the loops to slightly less diameter, so that the belt can be adjusted longer -- the main reason for doing this is the padding at rear is slightly offset from the centre of the back due to the length-adjustment buckle.

Belt and loops add 105g to the load that have to carry, so not sure if I will take it. The belt serves two purposes, also usable as a shoulder strap.

A shoulder strap did come with the Daylight pack, but I lost it. It is useful when travelling on buses, trains and airline carry-on. Paul and Drew on YouTube have reported that it is useful to have it attached while hiking, so as to be able to swing the pack around to the front -- hmmm, that might mean won't have to pack it into the Daylight pack.  

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