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Lifting Belts - opinions

Discussion in 'Strength & Conditioning' started by DBradD, Dec 27, 2005.

  1. DBradD

    DBradD

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    I've restarted lifting weights after years of absence. I competed in powerlifting years ago and was fairly fanatical - just as background.

    What do yawl think of routinely wearing belts in the gym? I've started thinking that wearing a belt is probably counterproductive for most cases because supporting muscles are being cheated of their workouts. I think at this point, I'd be inclined to wear one in a competition but that's about it. Edit: I'm talking about bodybuilding and typical weightlifting here - not training for powerlifting or olympic style weightlifting contests.

    Does solid research exist that helps to decide if belts are a good thing if word during exercises like bench press, behind the neck press, non-maximal squats, bentover rows, etc? I've gone without one so far and I think my abs and stabilizers are coming along well. I remember that my abs always stunk up the place years ago and I wonder if a lot of the problem was that I was taking pressure off them by wearing a belt.

    BTW, I know the theory behind increasing abdominal pressure, etc, so no need to type about that. My question is more whether this is a good thing or should the body be forced to increase this pressure all by itself.

    DBD
     
  2. ateamer

    ateamer NRA4EVR

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    I don't think a belt is that necessary for submaximal lifts. Even for maximal lifts, I think a belt should only be worn if it is a heavy weight - at least double bodyweight for the squat and deadlift. For a lifter squatting less than that, he needs to build up his support muscles before using a belt. I don't see any need to wear a belt for benching. I bench with a deep arch and a belt helps not at all. For a flat-backed bencher, it certainly won't help, either.
     

  3. BCR

    BCR BIGASS!!!!

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    While I am no expert (haha), I thought belts were only supposed to be worn when lifting around 80% of your 1 rep max.

    For some reason that just sticks in my head, but I could be way off.

    I currently don't do fewer than about 8-9 reps on my last and heaviest set of any exercise, and don't wear a belt.

    But for the first time in years I dragged my belt out and gave it a try 2 weeks ago. I added 50 pounds to my shrugs and wanted a little extra security. It felt pretty good.

    This week I stuck with the added weight and skipped the belt, and didn't notice a difference, I still felt fine.

    If I was lifting for fewer reps I would probably wear it on my last and heaviest sets of squats, shrugs, and deadlifts. But I lift in the stereotypical bodybuilder rep range, not power lifting, so I don't think a belt is needed.

    I haven't done a 1 rep max on any lift in years.
     
  4. Mister Joshua

    Mister Joshua Sig Addiction

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    I wear a "bodybuilder" type belt during my warmups with some kinda muscle rub under it, to get my low back nice and warm. Then I remove it for my working sets, until I get into 90% territory, then my Inzer Forever Lever comes out.

    I don't wrap my knees, but I do wear neoprene knee sleeves.