T Nation

Opinions on Belts


In the time I started training I have always seen advice against belts. But then again, I've also read about how curls are the devil, leg press machines suck, anytime of crunch movement, etc. What about weight belts? All the pro bb's use them and I really just care about maintaining my back health. After my hernia surgery in a few weeks I was thinking about picking up a belt. I'm 6'3" so my back tends to get a lot of activation with squats and deads. Your opinions?


I recommend using them with heavy working sets of deads and squats. That's about it really, nothing to it.

I have one of these, they're great. http://www.flexcart.com/members/elitefts/default.asp?m=PD&cid=205&pid=1378


I recently pulled an ab muscle while bench pressing. I have since started to wear my belt on bench pressing, rows, shoulder presses, lots of stuff. I like it and feel it helps to have something to push your abs out onto. Prior to this incident I would only use a belt on my heaviest deadlifts and squats.


your abdominal wall is your weight belt, providing it is strong.


Yeah, and no need for direct arm work either, right?


Sorry to hijack the topic but anyone have any recommendations for belts to use(brands, models etc)? Not really looking for a powerlifting belt since that's not my purpose.


i used a belt when i start going over 175lbs for standing military presses


If you haven't used one yet, I say you shouldnt wear one.


Huh? A belt = a powerlifting belt. Do you want to buy one of those stupid Nike mesh belts you buy at Wal-Mart? Those belts serve no purpose for any goals. Crain's, Bob's Belts, Inzer, Titan. You can get them anywhere.


I refuse to use them with deadlifts because they dig into my ribs and don't help. I feel plenty stable without one.

They're mandatory on squats for me. I feel 100% safer with the belt on.

I also think you should only use those thick powerlifting belts which are the same thickness all the way around, not like those thick back, thin front 'lifting belts'.


HolyMac also just made me realize I should probably use them for standing shoulder pressing because I stopped doing anything other than push presses because of the hyperextension from the weight.


You forgot EFS :slightly_smiling: Their retro belt is a little cheaper than others, but still nice.


Always wear your belt for your most heavy sets, and try not to over use it.


The same guys that say this are the 160lb assholes doing one-legged romanian deadlifts with 25lbs to improve their 'athletic performance'


You should get a belt and use it when you feel it is needed. Like the posters above, I mainly use it only on my heaviest sets. The only problem is that I need to get a new belt since I lost a little weight. I usually get mine from Elitefts and/or Inzer.


I don't use one. I probably should when the weight I use gets heavy. I'm only doing a 200lb squat and 225lb deadlift so I didn't think that really warrants one as yet. It's probably all relative though I guess.


Use a belt for all of my working sets for squats--but my back was also mangled in a football injury a few years back. It depends on your body type, but if you are much over 6' then you have a greater chance for back injury especially if you are long limbed.

I use a brown leather one with a wider back. I don't like using the super thick powerlifting ones very much.


if it's any reference point, i didn't start wanting or feeling like i 'needed' a belt until i moved past 375/400lbs for deadlifts


I really don't use them for anything.

My lower back use to be bad because of my huge stomach. So I needed to get it stronger. A belt will not help this. So... I don't use a belt.


I am not a big fan of belts but to each his own I guess. I squat heavy without one and people are always telling me that I need it, but i havent had any problems so far. I try not to lift a weight that I cant do at least 5 times though, I dont even try 1 rep sets anymore with anything.