Probably the cheapest and the most simple option for carrying around stuff on your bike is differently a backpack. I cycled with a cycling backpack as well as a classic one for a very long time before deciding that it wasn’t the best choice.
So I wanted to write this article to tell you all the negative aspects of cycling with a backpack that bothered me throughout the rides and will probably bother you as well, so let’s start.
Table of Contents
1. Back and Shoulder pain
At the beginning of the ride for the first couple of minutes, you won’t any feel pain at all. But by the 1-hour mark, you will begin to feel a little discomfort in your back and shoulders, as well as in your hands depending on your bike geometry and your body position during the ride.
Because the backpack is constantly pulling you back while you are also trying to maintain the forward pressure on your bike. This is bad especially for cycle commuters who want to cycle regularly because that strain is gonna add up over time and can cause a huge injury.
If you carry very few things with you then you won’t notice any difference. Weight and strain go hand-in-hand, and the heavier the backpack, the greater the pain.
2. It will make your Back really sweaty
Perhaps the biggest downside of carrying a backpack is when your back begins to sweat, there is nothing worse than that. Whether it is summer or winter your back will still end up wet at the end of the ride.
Even when I was using the cycling backpack whit separated breathable padding that is specifically designed to resist sweat, my back somehow still end up wet. I think that’s because the backpack still gets that contact especially if the bag is heavy and you are straining all the time.
Even if you wear a jacket or multiple layers of clothing underneath you are still going to have that same problem.
If you are a cycle commuter wearing a suit and you wanna get to work that is over 10km away from you maybe it is not a good idea to carry a backpack. Because there is a high chance you will get there completely wet.
3. Affect your pedaling and balance
When you are pedaling your whole body is moving left and right not only legs. And with a backpack on you, it can really affect your overall performance on the bike.
If you don’t have additional straps on your backpack that can attach to your body and make the bag more stable. It will start moving left and right and bouncing around when you come across any little hole.
The same goes if you cycle in the bends, you will be very unbalanced especially if your backpack is heavy.
4. Less comfortable ride
Nothing can replace the feeling of relief every time you take the backpack off. Due to the constant pressure it puts on your back and shoulders, you will want to take it off very often.
Your body position plays a huge role in your overall comfort. Cycling with a more upright stance can help you increase comfort. But the lower you are, the more pressure you will feel on your back and thus a less comfortable ride.
5. You can’t cycle long distance
As a long-distance cyclist, I can say that the backpack I probably the worst option out there for carrying stuff on a bicycle.
You can’t fit so many things in it, and it’s hard to carry for longer periods of time. There is no point in you carrying it when you have the bike frame to carry all the weight for you.
What should you use instead?
Here is the list of bags that I personally use for carrying around stuff on our bike.