T Nation

Belt Pinching Sides

Ok guys so I recently got a belt from EliteFTS and am trying to break it in. I’ve noticed when I reach right about parallel on a squat the belt pinches my sides and is quite painful. All the way down the squat the belt is fine, but once i hit that point it is painful. I’m a fatter guy so I got the extra meat there on my sides. I wear the belt so that the bottom of it is about equal with my bellybutton. Is this happening because the belt is new and not broken in yet? Or do I just need to stop being a pussy and look past the pain and squat? This is the first time using a belt since I was in HS and our coach made us wear a belt for every squat and deadlift, but those were flimsy 20 yr old leather belts.

It should improve as the belt gets broken in. wearing it a bit looser will also help.

Belt technology has advanced quite a bit. There are two main sizes these days 10cm and 13cm I believe. I have a 13cm Inzer myself and yes if you have those 13cm sized ones they can absolutely hurt when you max squat and deadlifting can be worse too. It is a blend of just deal with and yet if its actually hurting you that needs to be dealt with too. robo1 is right about loosening it. Less support but also less pain. Over time, to a degree the body and the belt will contour to each other.

I believe you mean 10mm and 13mm. I use a 10mm for this very reason. The wider ones are just too stiff for my liking. Even the 10mm is taking some getting used to, mine is new and I just started using a belt again after almost two years without touching one.

I agree, my 13mm lever’s total over kill. I wear a 10mm buckle now and keep my lever for benching in.

Yeah i have the 10mm Retro Series Belt from EFS. Hanley i remember reading a while back about how you broke a rib with your 13mm belt. Alright so I’ll try loosening it a notch and just workin with it. Do you guys think I should go really heavy with it? I was just working with 135 to get the feel for it, but I dont know if the added pressure will help break it in or not. Then again I probably just need to work with it in general and not worry too much about it.

I’ve had my belt for years and it still leaves marks sometimes.

You gotta pay to play.

Experiment moving it up or down on your torso or loosening it, if that doesn’t work then rough it out…in time it will fit you like a good pair of shoes.

Oh yeah I did mean mm not cm. Yeah my ribs are sore for days sometimes after a ME squat day. Ghost22 kinda hit it on the head though. I put my Inzer lever 13mm on without pulling the lever once I cross 400lbs. At 500lbs I will pull the lever for those extra inches of tightness. The other day I had 550 on the bar and I unracked and it felt totally weird. Then I realized I had not pulled my lever over. I re-racked and pulled it. I could feel a difference just standing with the bar on my back between super tight and two inches [or however many you get from the lever tightening] looser.

The lever belt that Hanley and I use is quite different since the belt overlaps on the inside. It took me a long time to get comfortable with that because you always have a gap somewhere. The trick is finding where it needs to be for your body and style of squatting.
Anyone who has ever worn a bench shirt or some briefs knows that the benefit of the compression does have its price.

I had similar issues with my Inzer lever 10mm, ditched that, got a retro series from EFS, LOVE it. I still had to play around with getting it set on my body correctly, I actaully wear it at a slight tilt. The buckle is slightly lower than the back, that just works for me. I’ll probably have to figure it out again after droping 20-30 pounds this past few months… but thats my problem :wink:

Summary, play around with it, you’ll find a place that it just feels right.

mine does this sometimes. i where th belt lower and it helps correct the problem to some degree but im whereing a training belt so its an easier fic for me.

I just recieved my belt from APT Prowriststraps and it seems to be a treated leather with suede on both sides. 13mm and it’s sturdy but comfortable(for a belt) Compared to a belt I just recently returned because it wasn’t what it claimed to be - Prowriststraps.com is something to be looked into.