Brian, sounds to me like shoulder pinch is your primary problem. I
don't thing putting something *under* you will help all that much.
You need to stretch the hammock away from your shoulders.
One way would be to get an extra stiff CCF pad that is wider than
your shoulders and use it as a kinda spreader platform to keep the
hammock from scrunching your shoulders up.
Also, as you mentioned, your upper body may be a little longer
causing your center of gravity to be different than ours. I'm not
really sure how this would relate to your upper/middle back but it
may. Try hanging the hammock at different angles (foot end
higher/lower) to see if it changes anything.
I built my summer hammock 11 feet long and this really helped end
the shoulder pinch. I can have a lot more sag and not have my feet
falling off the end. I lie more on the diagonal and that allows more
room for my shoulders. The difference is so good I may build all of
my hammocks this length. The only drawback is the extra weight,
which is why I tried it with my summer hammock first. The winter
hammock doesn't have as much pinch due to the CCF pads I use, but it
is still more than the new summer hammock.
Try a small pillow, or stuff sack filled with clothes. I use a small
travel pillow cut in half, about the size of a paperback book. If I
don't I get a small pain between my shoulder blades but up high,
kinda between my lower neck and the middle of my shoulder blades.
The pillow makes it go away.
Just a couple of things I noticed when I first started building
hammocks. I get more shoulder pinch when I pull the sides during
whipping, I leave 'em slack now. Mor sag is better, to a point, and
my non-ridgeline hammocks seem to be more comfy than my ridgeline
equipped ones, just not as easy to set up. Longer is more comfy than
shorter. I also like the *W* fold better than the other one.
To Amy: Being fairly clueless when it comes to medical stuff I'm not
> seeing how hip flexors would impact this, but I don't think mine
> inflexible; from a standing position I can put the palms of my
> on the floor with my knees locked (mind you, I'm relatively long in
> the upper body and short-legged).
> To Scott: I think the key issue for me is to focus not on the
> longitudinal hammock sag, but on the latteral (side-by-side)
> constriction of the shoulders, i.e., my shoulders are forced to
> forward over a long period of time when lying on my back in the
> Again, I really appreciate the inputs, and apologies to those that
> aren't interested in mid-back pain details.