Harness choice


New member
I am looking for an SRT harness, and interested in the MTDE Varonia & AV Technibat. I've only used the petzl superavanti before and find it quite uncomfortable: I am small and it doesn't sit on or above my hips securely. Anyone have experience with these and can offer advice?


Active member
I had only used a superavanti before I got my MTDE Amazonia.
Ended up trying out a few with Tony Seddon (starless river) at one hidden earth. Try and catch him at a caving hut near you (especially one with SRT facilities)


New member
I wish I could visit Tony - problem is I don't think it's feasible to get up there to see him before I need it (we are going caving abroad)


Karstic, I agree with Josh, trying different harness'sits defiantly the way to go, unfortunately it would appear you have left it a bit late, do any of your colleagues have different harness's they might let you try. or look at Starless River diary as Tony visits different areas each weekend. Otherwise it might be best to stick with what you have until you are in a position to try on harness's.
I have an AV harness and whilst it is the most comfortable I have tried, I cant say it comfortable, just more comfortable than others. I also have issues with keeping the waist strap high, the solution that myself and Tony came up with was to change to a bra type harness and then link chest and sit harness together with a strap, made mine from my petzl y harness cutting and sewing some velcro to join the two.

Steve Clark

Active member
(I'm a big person.) I found the Technibat far more comfortable than the Super Avanti, but it does have a lot of straps. There's a lot going on with stitched areas on the front of the thighs around the D area. I imagine it could be quite congested on a smaller person.

I now use a Petzl Aven. This feels more like a climbing harness to me with a more conventional waist belt that sits higher on the hips. The two white loops for the D are very small and tidy. It is, however, quite expensive.


I also found the Technibat comfortable and supportive but quite complex strap-wise, it's too much faff for a lazy person like me. It's sitting unused somewhere in my cupboard, welcome to make an offer on it and get it much cheaper than from a shop to try it out @Karstic


Well-known member
I only use MTDE harnesses now - they're very comfortable and the design/shape when worn seems almost perfect. I use the lightweight Club for tight or pushing trips, or where it must be stuffed into a small bag for part of the trip. I use the heavier but supremely comfortable Picos for bolting or long SRT trips where I'll be hanging around for a while - the bum strap makes a huge difference to comfort, but is heavier, and it will definitely not fit in a small bag, no matter how hard I try, even with everything separated. I also use a Garma chest harness - more expensive, but again, super-comfortable, has loads of loops for hanging kit, and is properly PPE - as in, you can hang from it if you have to, unlike regular chest straps. It's not as cheap solution, but allows a lot more flexibility. And that also won't fit in the small bag, even with a Club in, so I just keep that on. A cheap backstrap with some snap-buckles to connect the chest harness to the sit harness makes it even more comfy.

If you're only getting one, I think you'd be very happy with the Varonia.