How To Distribute Weight In A Backpack

How To Distribute Weight In A Backpack? Best Guide-2023


Before going for any type whether it hiking, skiing, trekking, or something else obviously you would need a backpack to carry all your belongings for that specific trip comfortably to fulfill your needs. Buying a quality backpack doesn’t mean that it should be comfortable and easy to carry rather you would also be an expert in how to distribute weight in a backpack as buying a quality backpack expertise doesn’t enough to give you comfort and easy-to-carry service.

In fact, every trip nature is different from one another but there are some general rules that you need to apply to maximize your efficiency, comfort, and easiness and to abrogate aches and pains.

Now, this is a technique to know while backpacking for your tour to avoid any uncertain situations, damages, or injuries during your journey, so let’s have a look at learning this technique.

Read about how to clean a leather backpack

Things To Know Before Backpacking For A Tour

Prior to knowing how to distribute weight in a backpack, it is necessary to consider certain factors before backpacking for a tour to help you better in the organization of your stuff in the backpack. The following are some factors that may consider before backpacking for your trip

  1. Selection Of The Right Backpack
  2. Choose a Compartments Backpack
  3. Carry Less And Relevant Items
  4. Two Padded Straps Backpack

1. Selection Of The Right Backpack

Prior to organizing the backpack, you have to select the right backpack for your trip whether it is hiking, skiing, or trekking keep in mind the right size of the pack. 

The right backpack can be very helpful in distributing the items in it because first, it can fulfill all your needs and secondly, it will give you comfort and easy to carry facility.

2. Choose A Multiple Compartments Backpack

Always choose a backpack having multiple compartments to cover all off items and might be comfortable for carrying. 

3. Carry Less And Relevant Items

Try to carry all the items that are relevant to your trip and avoid unnecessary and heavy items because they can create disturbance during your journey and your trip will change from fun to irritation and inconvenience.

4. Two Padded Straps Backpack

Choose a backpack that has two padded straps because a single padded can fall all your weight onto one side which creates difficulties in carrying the pack. 

Why To Properly Distribute Weight In A Backpack?

A proper organization of the backpack is necessary to lift a heavy load with minimum weight and to avoid suffering from any kind of injuries and damages

1. Maintain Balance And Stability

The weight distribution of the backpack helps to maintain the balance of your body while on the go as well as helps in passing the narrow passages in your way because unbalancing of the body due to the non-organization of the stuff in the backpack leads you to an inconvenience situation such as injuries or damages.

There are many advantages of the distribution of weight in a backpack but we will discuss them here a few basics one.

2. East To Carry

Weight distribution is also helpful in carrying your stuff in hilly mountainous areas because in that case, you have to handle yourself and your belongings too. This technique helps in carrying the stuff in different types of activities such as trekking, hiking, skiing, traveling in the countryside, etc. 

3. Prevent You From Backpain

When the weight of the load falls on one side or the other or is unbalanced on either side can cause you pain in the back or can cause permanent damage to your spine when traveling by foot for a long distance or hiking or trekking, etc.

How To Distribute Weight In A Backpack?

To maximize efficiency and comfort weight can be distributed in a backpack in two ways technical and practical way. Technically, items should be distributed in the loading zones of the backpack such as the top, central body, lower compartment, external pockets, and hydration system while practically different items should be distributed in the parts of these loading zones

Every trip needs a specific backpack but here we will discuss general rules to follow to minimize the weight of a heavy load and to maximize its efficiency and comfort..

Now, we will discuss in detail how to distribute weight in a backpack

  • Technical Information
  • Practical Guidance

1. Technical Information

To properly distribute a weight you have to first technically understand how manufacturers made the backpack and in what part specific items should be placed to minimize the weight of the load as all this information is unknown to a non-technical person

Technically, the backpack is divided into six (06) loading zones which are as follow

  1. Top Area
  2. Central Body
  3. Lower Compartment
  4. External Pockets
  5. Map Pocket
  6. Hydration System

1. Top Area

The top area of the backpack is meant for small objects with easy access such as mobile, compasses, calculators, caps, pencils, erasers, etc. It is advisable not to put any large or bulky items in this area.

2. Central Body

It area of more weight than others. In this part, lighter items such as clothing should be placed at the lower upper side while the heaviest items such as tents, foods, etc should be placed close to your body.

3. Lower Compartment

This area is specified for items of small weight and high volumes such as sleeping bags, dirty clothes, sleepers, etc so maximize the efficiency of the pack in carrying. Many 40-liter plus packs have a lower compartment.

4. External Pockets

This part is meant for those items that are in easy access to your hands. It is important to note to keep the weight on both sides in this area.

5. Map Pocket

This area is designed in the field backpack to carry different types of maps etc so always keep the items in that which are meant for that specific stuff

6. Hydration System

This pocket is meant for carrying a hydration pack or reservoir without causing difficulty in your comfort.

In the last of this technical information so ection if you want to minimize the weight of the load you have to place items in that loading zone part for which it is meant.

2. Practical Guidance

To lower the weight of the backpack with a heavy load you have to understand what items should be placed in which part of the pack. Here is the practical guidance to show you in different steps which are as follows

1. Putting Lighter And Compressible Items

The lighter and compressible items should be put at the bottom of your backpack because these are stuff that you need until you set up your camp, further, these items also act as an excellent shock absorber for the rest of your pack weight

List Of The Lighter And Compressible Items

Following is the list of lighter and compressible items that are

  • Sleeping bag
  • Sleeping Pad
  • Nightwear
  • Lightweight shoes

2. Putting Of Heavier Items

The heavier items should be placed in the middle of the backpack closest to your back as we said in the technical information section about the central body that comes in the middle of the pack, so that all the weight of the load falls on your hipbones rather than on your shoulders. Further, this place is also good for keeping extra clothes or tent fabrics.

Here is an example of the heaviest items

  • Cooking utensils
  • Food ( meals, not snacks that you need on the go)
  • Stove
  • Emergency rations
  • Tent Poles
  • Tent Stake

3. Putting Of Outer Layers And Light Supplies

The lighter items should be put on top of the backpack because these stuff are frequently been used on the go, so, keep all those things in this area that you regularly access on the trail.

  • Toilet Supplies
  • Insulated Jackets
  • Waterproof layers
  • First Aid kit
  • Water purifiers
  • Swimming stuffs

You will also need more outer pockets, loops, and clips  to place your other items such as your passport, documents, sunscreen, or other regularly used things 

Tips To Distribute Weight In A Backpack

Here are a few tips that we collected after practically observing in our daily lives and deeply studying how to organize items in a backpack which are as follows

1. Get The Centre Of Gravity

You should first get the center of gravity of the load by attaching the backpack nearest to your back as much as possible to minimize the weight of the load.

2. Maintain Balance Of The Body

Do not hold anything on the outer side of the backpack because it can unbalance you and further, it can create difficulty while passing narrow passages.


I hope by following all the above techniques of how to distribute weight in a backpack you might be able to maximize the efficiency and comfort of carrying your backpack and minimize chances of injuries and damages. Further, consider certain factors before organizing the stuff in a backpack along with tips to follow that have been mentioned above. 

Now, hope to understand all these things well and you will give a practical shape to all these techniques.


1. How do you divide weight in a backpack?

Properly dividing the weight

A spare set of clothes, for instance. The heavy items, such as food and water, should be stored close to your back, in the middle of your backpack. The farther away the gear will be from your back, the lighter it needs to be.

2. How do you balance weight in a school bag?

Distribute weight evenly

You can also balance out the weight they’re carrying by moving around the contents of the backpack. Put larger, heavier textbooks nearer your child’s body so that when they’re running and swinging around, the centrifugal force of the backpack doesn’t cause a loss of balance and a fall.

3. How do you carry weight in a backpack?

Pack your backpack with the heaviest items closest to your back: Don’t drop all your stuff in the main compartment. Use the side pockets to spread the weight out. If your pack is really heavy and you can’t get around the number of books you need, take some of the books out of your pack and carry them in your hands.

4. Can a heavy backpack break your back?

A backpack that is too heavy can cause permanent damage to the spine. Here’s what you can do to be safe. Wearing a backpack that is too heavy can cause back pain, neck pain, numbness and tingling in the arms and hands, and weakness in the arms and hands.

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