Running Backpacks vs Race Vests Explained.

Running Backpacks vs Race Vests Explained.

I have run for many years with all sorts of backpacks in Ultra distance events.

How do you prefer to run ? Race pack on your BACK or on your FRONT ?

There is a big difference between packs which carry your goods on the front vs’ carrying on the back.

A pack located on your back is more prone to ‘wobble’.  Upper torso movement, especially across the shoulders, can affect the way running posture.

With a ‘Front’ carrying capacity race pack, the balance is spread more evenly  and allows me to run more naturally. If you take into consideration an ultra race might last for 17-24 hours – its important consider your posture is balance correctly.

My favorite are the packs which you carry most of your hydration and necessary gels/ phones and maps on the front of the vest. This makes for easy access and always close by to remind you to hydrate and eat.

What do you need in a Race Vest?

  • Hydration (bottles, bladder)
  • Food pouches
  • lights / or attachments
  • Semi-waterproof pouch for phones etc
  • Reflective taping for night use
  • Whistle (*race kit mandatory)
  • Adaptable strapping for walking poles/external packaging.

The race vest featured has a good deal of these things included. We always recommend the addition of a ‘waterproof’ phone pouch if you are going to do things properly.

The Inov8 Race Elite packs are our best value for money Race Vests. They retail usually for 85-100 euro, but we have a limited supply on sale for €55.

Complete with 2 x 500 ml front facing water bottles.

INOV8 Race Elite Vest Hydration Pack