The other afternoon, the female Photo Life staff members tested out Joby’s UltraFit Sling Strap for women. After looking at the instructions and watching the online demo video, we gave it a try.
We tried on the camera with the standard neck strap it came with, then we switched to the UltraFit Sling Strap. It is designed to be worn cross-body (so that the weight is supported by your stronger shoulder muscles instead of your neck muscles), and the female version is tailored for the female form. The padded chest strap has an S-curve and pivot ring to help it curve comfortably around the chest.
The strap easily attaches to your camera with a ¼”-20 thumbscrew. The Quick-Draw Design and SpeedCinch system let you quickly move the camera from its locked position to a photo-taking position. There’s a lock that you simply unsnap before you bring the camera up for use. To secure it back in place, you lower it and snap it into its locked position. It takes only a little practice until the lock/unlock movement becomes effortless (and one-handed) like in the video. And once it’s in the locked position, it doesn’t move around much when you are walking.
One of the first things we noticed when we put it on is that it’s made for right-handed people (and is not reversible for left-handed use). Annie and I are right-handed, and Valérie is left-handed. However, Valérie is used to doing physical activities with both hands, so she was comfortable using it anyways.
Annie suggested that we see if we could carry another bag while wearing (and using) the strap, so we grabbed my backpack and Valérie’s messenger-style bag (worn under the camera strap in the opposite direction to make an X with the two cross-body straps). Both worked fine with the strap, and it’s compact enough to fit inside a small bag or purse.
Our conclusion? This strap will be very much appreciated by many female photographers since it is infinitely more comfortable than the standard neck strap or other straps made for men. (And I am looking forward to borrowing it in the near future…)