I never liked my harness to rotate like some others do who purposefully leave it loose so that it slides around. If you like this then the engine is likely not for you as it needs to be snug and when it is it will not rotate or rise up. I could see some discomfort if it was not snug enough.
I will say the flat spreader bar from engine works better then the dakine one I have as far as pivoting up is concerned. Mine doesn't pivot past the front strap but I can sometimes feel a bit of pressure. When engine comes out with his flat fixed hook I will buy one, although my wife always uses a fixed hook and she says it never pivots uncomfortably on her. She also has a history of back issues and is super happy with her engine then she ever was with her board short harness so I think that says something....
Now if you are really worried about the pivoting of the spreader bar, you could always have the pad sewn directly to the strap, it is wide enough and once this is done there is no chance of it moving. This is how I use my slider bar, I have a pouch with velcro tabs that holds in firmly in place although I don't think it would move regardless. I'll take a picture tonight if you are interested.
Da Yoda wrote:
WRT the engine harness. What is the best spreader bar option for those who want to have both a fixed hook for TT days and a sliding set up for wave days. I'm not apposed to having two interchangeable spreaders, in fact it is preferable to undoing parts to switch up.
Definitely pulling the trigger soon on one of these but would love to hear what the user base has to say on spreader bars first.
I use two spreader bars for the exact reasoning you have specified. My slider bar is made by Engine, and I also use a Dakine spreader bar and pad for the flat water days.
Comfort wise I prefer the flat Engine bar and will likely buy the fixed hook version once they are available. I can switch them in about a minute. They both work perfectly.
Hey LMan - Have you had any comfort issues when using the fixed S-bar? I found this post from another user that had me a little concerned...
If you want to use it with a mystic spreader be sure to have him put a 3rd "hold-down" strap on. It makes the hook stay down much better. But really that harness works much better with a sliding hook. Because the back support is very rigid and is molded to be centered on your back if gets pulled to one side by a non-sliding hook the bump on the harness that normally fits into the small of your back can pressure some muscles on the side of your spine (at least this happens for me) and it can be quite painful. With a sliding hook the harness does not rotate at all and works really well.
With a sliding hook there is minimal upward rotation even with two straps. With a non-sliding hook, (only tried mystic) the third strap does a good job to prevent upward rotation, but without it there is some upward pull that causes the spreader to dig in to my ribs a bit