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Mobile ad hoc networks are collections of mobile nodes that can dynamically form temporary networks without the need for pre-existing network infrastructure or centralized administration. These nodes can be arbitrarily located and can move freely at any given time. Hence, the network topology can change rapidly and unpredictably. Because wireless link capacities are usually limited, congestion is possible in MANETs. Hence, balancing the load in a MANET is important since nodes with high loads will deplete their batteries quickly, thereby increasing the probability of disconnecting or partitioning the network. This article discusses the various load metrics and summarizes the principles behind several existing load balanced ad hoc routing protocols. Finally, a qualitative comparison of the various load metrics and load balanced routing protocols is presented.