Medical Articles

Choosing the Right Lifting Belt for You

For anyone that's doing heavy Olympic-styled powerlifts at the gym, sooner or later owning a weightlifting belt becomes almost a necessity. But with all the options out on the market, how can you tell which one is for you? Here is a rundown of the different decisions you'll have to make about your belt and the pros and cons of each.

The first thing that you'll have to do with your belt is decide what material you would like to have it made out of. The two choices that you usually have here are nylon and leather. Leather weight lifting belts are the toughest on the market and will keep your back in place no matter what. Unfortunately, their rigidity can be their downfall as well. For complex moves they might not have enough give and they tend to scratch your skin. Nylon belts solve these problems by being more flexible, but they also offer less support.

The next thing you will have to decide is how thick you want your belt to be. Belts range in thickness from four to six inches on the back side of them, with a few smaller or bigger ones to be found occasionally. The bigger you are the bigger belt you will usually need, but this is also sometimes a matter of preference. If you are a big lifter, but have a strong back you may only want a smaller belt. Try to find a belt that is about the size you want to use before you buy one to see if it will fit you.

Finally, you need to look at the locking system of the belt. Usually leather belts will have a fixed locking system and nylong belts have a quick release, but this is not always true. A quick release will give you a better fit, but a fixed lock gives you more support.


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