T Nation

Belt Question

I’ve never used a belt before but have seen enough poeple using them so now im kind of curious and thinking of getting one.

what exactly is the purpose of the belt? and what does it improve on? I’ve read on here that some poeple dont recommend using them?

Is something i should be using? thoughts?

Thanks in advance.

They help keep your posture, so you don’t mess your back doing things like squats and deads. They offer support.

This also means that, like with squats for example, your core isn’t getting worked as hard to help you stabilize. You’ll most likely be able to lift more with a belt on (I can), but you’re working your core/stabilizers less.

I use squats for their total effect, and do things like leg press in addition for muscle isolation, so I don’t use a belt.

I use a belt when doing max lifts ONLY (squats & deads). A belt also helps increase the internal pressure you put when doing the valsalva maneuver (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valsalva_maneuver).

However, reading from a author on T-Nation he said that it can lead to external obliques weakness because you are pushing on the belt and not on your abs. But this comes down to people who use it more than necessary.

My take on them.

how long have you been lifting?? bodyweight?? lift numbers?? if your still new to lifting there is no need at all to have a belt…unless your using very heavy weights for reps between 1-5 your shouldnt use one, that doesnt mean you 110% cant, but i dont think you need one right now…so maybe give us some more information about your lifting experience and goals and that may help us give you better information…

IronWarrior

ive been lifting about 14 months now
im 32 years old, 5’-9", 180 lbs

PRs for Dead, Squat and bench are currently…405,320,200

i just basically want to continue ot make progress on my main lifts, gain a bit more size and maintain or increase my current level of leaness… so was wondering if a belt would be of benefit or not

Lifting belts are designed to help prevent hernias. They also add trunk stability because it gives you something to push on to create more intra-abdominal pressure. Without a belt you rely on bracing your abs and pushing out to create that pressure.

I use one for my heaviest sets of rack pulls and hack squats. Sometimes for barbell curls. Belts are good to use but not as a crutch, just like all other equipment.

as Bonez said, they are great to use when necessary…its nothing something you should put on for every set of your squats/deads…maybe on your heaviest sets of your squats/deads, or going for a PR or something, but dont use it for your sets of 225 on deads…you still want your body to get strong without the help of a belt…again, if your getting to your heavier weights than put it on…i recommend one from prowriststraps.com i did competitive powerlifting for quite sometime and their belt proved extremely strong, durable, and i loved it…takes some time to break in a good belt but at once it breaks in its awesome…hope this helped

IronWarrior

[quote]Fuzzyapple wrote:
I use a belt when doing max lifts ONLY (squats & deads).

[/quote]
I remember reading somewhere that bodybuilders typically should only use a belt when lifting close to their 1rm to avoid injury when squatting.

I rarely use one when squatting, and never on deadlift. I prefer to build my own belt, of muscle.

Personally, I never used a belt until I was squatting over 400 lbs, and DLing over 500…personally I think that was the right choice. Now, I use one a little more liberally with heavy-ass sets.

[quote]Rocky2 wrote:

[quote]Fuzzyapple wrote:
I use a belt when doing max lifts ONLY (squats & deads).

[/quote]
I remember reading somewhere that bodybuilders typically should only use a belt when lifting close to their 1rm to avoid injury when squatting.

I rarely use one when squatting, and never on deadlift. I prefer to build my own belt, of muscle.[/quote]

Sorry, for not being as swole as you…

alright thanks for the tips guys…i think i’ll pick one up and give it a try… btw seems most of the belts on prowriststraps.com seem to be out of stock?