These Weightlifting Belts Will Upgrade Your Gym Workouts and Save You From Injuries

Best Weight Lifting Belts
Courtesy of Amazon

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There’s nothing quite like hitting a new personal record lift at the gym. Whether you’re bench pressing 200 pounds for the first time, notching a personal best squat or deadlifting in a weight class you’ve never touched before, the rush and intensity that accompany a one-rep max are unparalleled in the world of weightlifting fitness. Strength training at a high weight level has plenty of benefits, from the obvious perks like stronger muscles and boosted self-esteem to more nuanced results like improved mood and reduced risk of heart disease and other chronic conditions.

Why You Should Consider a Weightlifting Belt

But literally pushing your body to and past its limits can be incredibly dangerous. In those heavy lifting scenarios, you’re asking a lot of your muscles, some of which aren’t equipped to handle that kind of stress.  This is where weightlifting belts come in. These sturdy strength training tools securely wrap around your waist and provide your back and abs with extra support during your heaviest lifts.

In general, weightlifting belts help accomplish two things:

  • Decreased stress on the lower back. 
  • Decreased risk of hyperextension. 

A tight, durable weightlifting belt compresses your abdominal cavity, creating what’s called intra-abdominal pressure (IAB). While that might sound like a bad thing, this pressure actually creates support for the bones in your lower back, giving a bit of a breather to your spinal erector muscles, which would usually be responsible for this and often aren’t equipped to offer the necessary support during heavy lifts. A weightlifting belt also helps prevent hyperextension during overhead lifts like the shoulder press, which can move your lower back into some abnormal angles and positions as the weight increases. All in all, a weightlifting belt is critical for protecting your spine during heavy lifts.

What To Look for in Weightlifting Belts

The best weightlifting belts usually fall into two camps — durable leather belts that are bulkier but last longer and offer greater support, or nylon and velcro belts that are generally more comfortable and easier to both put on and stash in your gym bag. You’ll also notice that weightlifting belts dedicated for bodybuilding tend to be wide across the back, then transition to a narrower shape around the front. Powerlifting belts, on the other hand, maintain a consistent width across the entire length.

If you’re ready to upgrade your weightlifting sessions, check out the weightlifting belts below. We’ve rounded up the best that you can buy, and sorted them out by weightlifting discipline, price and level of expertise required to use them.

  

1. Dark Iron Fitness Leather Weightlifting Belt

BEST OVERALL

This leather belt from Dark Iron Fitness is our top pick. A slightly less rigid, comfortable fit makes it perfect for the recreational, bodybuilding-style workouts that most guys do regularly. It’s well-priced at $40 (some belts can get up to $100), but the real kicker is a lifetime warranty where Dark Iron will send you a new belt if your belt ever fails. And with over 18,000 reviews and 4.7 stars on Amazon, it’s by far the best-rated too.

Weightlifting Belt Leather Dark Iron Courtesy of Amazon

  

2. Element 26 Self-Locking Weight Lifting Belt

BEST RANGE OF COLORS

With white, red, black and purple to choose from, there’s likely an Element 26 Self-Locking Weight Lifting Belt to suit your favorite workout attire. It’s made from a 100% premium, no-flex material which delivers a mix of support and comfort during your workouts. The smart, quick-release mechanism allows you to loosen the belt without removing it. You’ll also find the uniform, 4″ profile applies consistent pressure for optimal stabilizing during lifting. Furthermore, the versatile belt can be used in a range of physical activities and is also approved for use in CrossFit competitions.

best weightlifting belts element Image courtesy of Amazon

  

3. ProFitness Leather Workout Belt

BEST FOR BEGINNERS

If this is your first time buying a weightlifting belt, we suggest this one from ProFitness. It has a simple 4” all-leather construction that’s great for recreational lifting. At $24-$29 (depending on your size), it’s relatively inexpensive, so it’s not a big deal if you don’t end up using the belt that often. Plus, ProFitness offers a 60-day money-back guarantee if you realize that a belt isn’t for you.

Weight Lifting Belt Beginners Courtesy of Amazon

  

4. Rogue Ohio Lifting Belt

BEST SPLURGE

Rogue Fitness has made a name for itself as one of the most legit manufacturers of gym-quality equipment, from power racks and barbells to bumper plates and benches. It’s no surprise, then, that Rogue produces one of the highest quality weightlifting belts on the market. The Ohio belt is both gorgeous and effective, made from 10mm thick American leather that looks as good as it helps prevent pain while lifting. Because this is real leather we’re talking about here, there is somewhat of a break-in period, but it’s worth it for such a high quality piece of gear. The price reflects the craftsmanship, but this belt is built to last.

rogue ohio weightlifting belt Courtesy of Rogue Fitness

  

5. Gymreapers Quick Locking Weightlifting Belt

ALSO CONSIDER

Another great choice on this list of the best weightlifting belts, Gymreapers’ Quick Locking belt sports a heavy duty buckle that’s easy to strap on and off in between your toughest sets at the gym. The belt features reinforced stitching for extra sports, folds up easily for convenient travel, and comes in six badass colors. Gymrepeaers also offers a lifetime replacement guarantee, a testament to the quality of this weightlifting belt.

Gymreapers weightlifting belt Courtesy of Amazon
  

6. Harbinger Nylon Weightlifting Belt

BEST COMPACT

If you’re going to entrust your midsection to a budget belt, go for this nylon belt from Harbinger. It has a versatile 4” thickness that works for bodybuilding, and a customizable velcro closure that makes it great for CrossFit training. Although it comes with an incredible $15 price tag, reviewers say it’s actually very well-made. This versatility and low price makes it a great buy if you’re not quite sure whether you want a weightlifting belt yet.

Weight Lifting Belt Cheap Velcro Courtesy of Amazon

      

7. Fire Team Fit Weightlifting Belt

BEST FOR CROSSFIT

Weightlifting belts were originally intended for classic lifting, but CrossFitters are now adopting the piece as well. Extra back and ab support is still a safety and performance upgrade for CrossFit, but you’ll need the proper belt. This Fire Team Fit belt is our recommendation because it has a lightweight nylon build and a velcro closure that can be perfectly adjusted for different movements throughout your workout.

Weightlifting Belt Nylon Crossfit Courtesy of Amazon

    

8. Iron Bull Strength Weight Lifting Belt

MOST DURABLE

Constructed from thick suede leather and featuring double stitching, the Iron Bull Strength Weight Lifting Belt is a versatile and durable option for support during workouts. This well-reviewed belt is the choice of many top athletes and works to increase intra-abdominal pressure for added stability during weightlifting, strength training and more. It’s also available in a range of different colors, including green, blue and purple and features a double-prong closure with 10 locking positions to ensure you get the right fit for you.

best weightlifting belts ironbull Courtesy of Amazon

  

9. Flexz Fitness Weightlifting Belt

BEST FOR POWERLIFTING

Traditional powerlifting (single-rep squat, bench press and deadlift) isn’t as popular among recreational lifters, but it’s a great endeavor if you’ve been lifting for a while. If you decide to give the sport a shot, a great belt is essential for safety. Most powerlifters opt for a lever buckle belt like this one from Flexz Fitness because they comply with competition regulations, offer serious support, and can be quickly removed for rest between bouts.

Weightlifting Belt Lever Powerlifting Courtesy of Amazon

  

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