Any serious lifter knows that in order to step up their weight lifting, they need a good weight lifting belt. It serves to reduce chances of injury and also allows to lift more weight. The idea behind them is to provide your spine with additional support, which, in turn, helps to stabilize it and protect the back against injuries. So if you’re ready to step up your game and are looking for the best weightlifting belt, you’ve come to the right place. These weightlifting belt reviews are your definitive guide to find that perfect belt for your needs.
- Fire Team Fit
- Material: nylon
- Width: 6 inches
- Other: contoured design
- Lifetime warranty
- Material: leather
- Width: 4 inches
- Other: suede lining
- Dark Iron Fitness
- Material: leather
- Width: 4 inches
- Other: IPF and USAPL approved
- Lifetime replacement
- Material: leather
- Width: 4 inches
- Other: Heavy Duty Metal Buckle
- 60-Day Guarantee
- Flexz Fitness
- Material: leather
- Width: 4 inches
- Other: IPF and USAPL approved
- Lifetime guarantee
- Material: leather
- Width: 4 inches
- Other: Soft suede lining
10 Top Rated Weight Lifting Belts Reviewed
Dark Iron Fitness Genuine Leather Pro
The best leather weightlifting belt and the best lifting belt overall for both men and women is the Dark Iron Fitness Genuine Leather Pro. It’s built to last through your most intense workouts for years to come. In fact, the company is so sure in the quality of this belt that they offer a lifetime replacement guarantee.
The belt is made of top quality buffalo hide leather that will withstand the toughest strength training and weight lifting. It can hold up to 600 pounds of pressure from deadlifts and squats without any tear or stretching. In addition to being a strong material, it’s also soft and flexible. So as you lift the weights, the belt remains comfortable.
Measuring 4 inches in height, the belt provides you with maximum support for your back and entire core. It gives that perfect leverage for pushing maximum loads.
While the belt is rugged and weighs 1.5 pounds, it doesn’t feel too bulky on the waist. It provides a non-slip fit, so you don’t have to worry about it coming loose or riding up.
Fire Team Fit
If you’re looking for the best weight lifting belt for CrossFit, squats, deadlifts or any other strength training, another great belt to consider is the Fire Team Fit.
It’s a nylon belt, which in comparison to leather is softer and more flexible. It’s also a durable material and on this belt, it’s reinforced with industrial quality stitching. Moreover, the belt features a heavy duty strap and a roller buckle, all of which contribute to a design that is built to last.
The belt is built to provide maximum support. First of all, the lumbar area features extra padding that doubles the support. Secondly, the belt has a contoured design, meaning it’s wider in the front and back and narrower on the sides. On top of that, the belt secures with a Velcro strap. Unlike with pre-set holes, this allows adjusting tightness for maximum comfort.
While providing sufficient support, it’s also lightweight and flexible enough for performing in comfort any other exercises.
This weightlifting belt is available in multiple colors and at a very good price. To top it off, the company also offers a lifetime warranty. So if your belt breaks, you can always replace it for free.
Another great weight training belt is the Harbinger Leather unit. It features durable construction, feels comfortable and provides the necessary support.
The construction consists of padded leather, interior foam cushioning and suede lining. It supports your back and abdomen while enhancing your level of comfort. The contoured design maximizes the midsection, which can measure 4 or 6 inches, depending on the option you choose. This stabilizes your back and core, helping you maintain proper posture.
The contoured design along with suede lining make the belt sit snugly on your waist. It also secures tightly on your waist using a heavy duty buckle that is made of strong steel. Moreover, there’s a generous amount of holes, so you can get the perfect fit.
ProFitness Genuine Leather
The ProFitness model is also one of the best back support belts for lifting. It’s designed to prevent back injuries and help you enhance your core strength.
It’s made from premium-grade leather, which is the best material for powerlifting belts if you don’t want it to tear or stretch under the heavy pressure. So it’s the perfect design that will hold up to the wear of frequent use.
An easily adjustable heavy-duty metal buckle helps to secure the belt, so it stays in place as you do your squats or another exercise. The belt offers a comfortable, non-slip fit without the edges digging into your skin when you’re bending or straining.
The width of the belt is 4 inches, which provides adequate support for the lower back and thus helping you maintain proper form and preventing any back injuries.
It’s also a unisex bodybuilding belt, so it’s a great option for both men and women.
Flexz Fitness Powerlifting And Weightlifting Belt
Whether you’re looking for the best deadlift belt, the best weight lifting belt for CrossFit, or other weight training, the Flexz Fitness model will provide you with the essential back support and protect you against related injuries.
The design of this belt is made of high quality materials, such as artificial leather and a solid steel buckle. Then, the structure is also reinforced with 3 rows of heavy duty stitching. So it’s strong and durable and can easily hold up to the most intense workouts.
The steel lever encourages intra-abdominal pressure, which helps you establish a safe and effective form. This will help to boost your performance and help you start lifting heavier.
This belt also delivers on comfort. You can adjust it to get the best fit, so it will properly brace and stabilize your spine. The design of it also makes sure that it doesn’t shift during use but stays securely in place.
Moreover, this brand shows commitment to creating high quality products by providing a lifetime warranty on this belt. Also, they offer a no-hassle return policy to keep their customers happy.
Ader Powerlifting Belt
If you’re looking for the best powerlifting belt, one of the best options is the Ader model. It’s thick and offers the same width all around, providing you with a high level of support for your powerlifting.
The belt is made of top quality leather, which makes it durable, and soft suede lining, which makes it comfortable. So it combines extreme toughness with good comfort.
It’s also one of the thicker weight training belts, measuring ⅜ inches. As for the width, it measures 4 inches. This makes the belt extra rigid and perfect for heavy weight lifting.
For securing the belt on the waist, there’s a double-prong roller buckle. However, there’s only one loop and in the beginning, when the belt hasn’t been broken into yet, it’s a bit difficult tucking it in.
Harbinger Weight Lifting Belt
One of the top weight lifting belts in 2019 is also the Harbinger model. It’s an extra-wide belt that combines flexibility and comfort with maximum back support.
The 5 inches of thick but ultra-light closed cell foam offers a flexible fit and the perfect amount of support. On top of that, there’s an additional 3-inch abrasion-resistant nylon strap overlay, which adds to that support.
The whole construction is lightweight and flexible, so as it sits snugly on your waist, it provides comfort and muscle warmth. To make it even more comfortable to wear, there’s also tricot inner lining, which feels plush against your skin.
The roller buckle is made of heavy gauge steel. It’s durable and makes it easy to adjust the tension for a perfect fit.
Rip Toned Lifting Belt
The Rip Toned is a great lifting belt for both men and women that will boost your workout performance and help your body transform as you lift heavier weights.
The belt feels sturdy and well made. It features a nylon core, which is a durable material. It provides good support for light to medium weight lifting. However, if you usually push heavier weights, you might want to get a heavier leather belt instead.
A long and wide velcro strap offers easy and fast adjustments of the tension. The contoured design also provides more support where needed. So it’s 4.75 inches wide at the back, 4.24 inches in the front and about 3 inches on the sides.
The manufacturer offers a lifetime replacement guarantee. So if you get the wrong size or if there’s some defect with the belt, you can ask for a replacement.
ProFitness has another great belt that delivers on both performance and comfort. It offers good all-around support, so you can be more focused on the workout and less concerned about the potential injury during the set.
It’s a contoured gym belt, giving you more support for the abdomen and back and a more comfortable narrower fit on the sides. So while improving your core, it doesn’t dig into your hips and cause discomfort.
The back also features padding in order to reduce strain and increase support. A sturdy roller buckle and strap easily adjust to different waist sizes, fitting both men and women.
While sturdy, the belt is also lightweight, so it doesn’t get in the way of your workout. Instead, it contributes to a comfortable fit.
The last pick on our list of best bodybuilding belts is the Element 26. It’s a great choice for a wide variety of weight training, including CrossFit, Olympic lifting and powerlifting.
It features a nice functional design with a uniform 4-inch profile. This provides even, intra-abdominal pressure, increasing the stability of your spine as you lift.
The belt’s construction is made of premium nylon. The design is perfect for those who find it frustrating having the padded insert or mesh coverings on the belt. So this belt is created with simplicity and most effective performance in mind.
It also comes with a secure self-locking buckle with the addition of Velcro just to keep the strap out of the way. It’s simple to use technology that doesn’t wear down and thus not subject you to the risk of injury while exercising. The buckle is also equipped with a quick release mechanism. You just need to pull the release roller and then you can even continue working out without removing the belt.
This bodybuilding belt is also competition approved. It can be used in USAW and CrossFit competitions.
Why Use a Weightlifting Belt?
Weightlifting belts used to be worn only in Olympic weightlifting and powerlifting. Today, however, even recreational lifters wear belts. So if you’ve been wondering why do weightlifters wear belts and what does a weightlifting belt do, here are the answers.
What Does a Weightlifting Belt Do?
Most people’s perception is that weightlifting belts purpose is to allow you to lift more weight and help prevent injuries. However, there’s great debate about this in the bodybuilding world.
As to the first idea: the belt won’t automatically level up your lifting ability.
As to the second: weightlifting belts do help to prevent injuries but they don’t act as a brace to support your torso.
What a weightlifting belt does do is increase intra-abdominal pressure. To understand this, let’s first take a look at how body mechanics work when you’re deadlifting, squatting, or doing other heavy weight exercises.
To be able to push or lift heavy weights, you hold your breath and tighten your torso. This creates a lot of pressure in your core and makes it a rigid and strong structure. This pressure is what allows you to lift or push weights without injuring your spine.
When you’re lifting heavy weights, you take a deep breath and the belt limits how far your abdomen can expand. This restriction increases intra-abdominal pressure and makes your torso tighten your core muscles even harder, making it even more rigid. This increases your lifting efficiency and allows to take on a bit more weight than you usually would without a belt. Moreover, this increased abdominal support adds to the support from the front and helps to stabilize your spine.
When To Use a Weightlifting Belt? – Weight Lifting Belt Pros And Cons
If you’re serious about lifting heavier, then you’ll definitely benefit from getting a weight training belt. If you regularly deadlift and squat with maximum weights, it will help to boost your performance.
However, there’s no need to wear a belt all the time. Training belt-less will help your body’s natural ability to harness intra-abdominal pressure. So for normal training days with loads less than 85% of your maximum lift. This will help you develop and strengthen your natural bracing and breathing capacity.
As you can see, there are definitely benefits to wearing a belt for your weight training. However, there are a few instances, when it’s best to avoid using it.
- If you have high blood pressure or other conditions that can be exacerbated by intra-abdominal pressure. For instance, with high blood pressure, the belt can raise even further.
- If you can’t maintain good form. Weightlifting belts don’t protect against poor technique and instead, they can make it even worse. So it’s better to start by refining your lifting technique and only after considering getting a belt.
- If you can’t stabilize your body without a belt. Your body needs to be properly stabilized for heavy loads and you can’t do that with just the belt. So you need to learn to properly brace your core. Otherwise, this can increase your chances of injury.
Above all, a weightlifting belt is not a fashion statement. You don’t need to wear it for every single exercise. For example, they are not necessary for training in which the spinal erectors do not work against heavy resistance. They are also not necessary when lifting loads that are fairly light. People mostly use them for squats, deadlifts and overhead pressing.
Choosing the Best Weightlifting Belt – Buying Guide
If after checking our best weight training belts you’re still not sure which one to choose, take a look at our comprehensive buying guide. Here we feature things to look for in order to find the most suitable weightlifting belt for your needs.
Weightlifting Belt vs Powerlifting Belt
You might have come across some people calling gym belts different names. If you’re wondering about the difference between weightlifting and powerlifting weights and unsure which one to get, below is a simple explanation.
The main difference is in the tongue. Powerlifting belts have the width of the tongue all the way around. Weightlifting belts, on the other hand, have a wider back and narrow front and sides.
Powerlifting belts are also usually more rugged and stiff, while weightlifting belts can be a bit softer and flexible.
But do you need a weightlifting belt or a powerlifting belt? To answer that question, think of the type of training you do in the gym. If you mostly do power movements, such as deadlifts and squats, you should get a powerlifting belt. It will give you full back support and prevent your lower back from bowing.
For Olympic weight training, stick with a weightlifting belt. It will also provide back support but at the same time will not limit your movements.
Types of Belt Designs
Weightlifting belts fall into three categories:
- Cylinder belts. This type features the same width all around and evenly covers the torso. It’s typically used by powerlifters and strongman athletes as it provides even support for the back, sides and abdomen.
- Tapered belts. The back features extra width, while the posterior is skinnier. So the wider part provides more support and the skinnier part allows the torso to remain mobile. This type of belts is a good option for Olympic lifters, as well as recreational athletes.
- Cone belts. This design is rarer and it features contoured sides with wider back and abdominal areas.
Types of Material
Weightlifting belts are usually made in one of the two materials:
- Leather. Most lifters prefer leather weightlifting belts and it’s usually the better option for serious training. Leather lasts longer, is usually thicker and has more rigidity. So if you want the most stability for your torso, while you perform maximal lifts, your best bet is to use a leather belt.
- Nylon. This material is more flexible and the belts are usually thinner in comparison to leather belts. As a result, you have the support but also maintain the maneuverability for a variety of movements. These are the best weight belts for CrossFit, recreational lifters and functional workouts. It’s also a great option for beginner lifters.
Some belts also combine leather and suede. So you get the ruggedness of leather and the softer, non-slip suede.
This depends on your needs and it should fit your individual torso. The belt should comfortably rest over your abdominal and lower back area. If it’s too wide for your torso, it can create pinching or dig into your skin. And if it’s too skinny, you won’t have the same support.
However, if you’re looking for a belt that International Powerlifting Compliant, you need a belt with a maximum 4 inches width.
Weightlifting belts usually come in 10 millimeters and 13 millimeter thickness. A thicker belt translates to a stiffer and more durable belt. They also provide more rigidity of the spine. Due to this, it’s favored by those that lift very heavy weights and competitive powerlifters. However, for others, it can make it uncomfortable and can limit their movements. That’s why most lifters tend to use the 10 millimeter belts.
Single Prong vs Double Prong vs Lever
Double prong belts are designed with the idea for the extra prong to evenly distribute the stress and to prolong its life. However, it’s not really necessary and just adds an extra step to the process of putting on your belt. So if you don’t the hassle of having two prongs, a single prong is better.
Some of the more expensive belts come with a lever that secures your belt in one simple movement. First, you need to adjust it to your waist size by attaching the lever to the correct hole setup. Then, after you finished training, you can just lift the lever and the belt is off. Moreover, it keeps the belt at the same tightness for your next workout. This makes them an easier and quicker option.
However, the lever design is not without its downsides. First of all, you’ll need a screwdriver to make the initial tightening or loosening of the belt. Secondly, your body weight might change or you might change the clothes you wear, then you will need to adjust the lever again.
In all, single prong and lever designs are the best options to go for. Choosing one or the other is more about your personal preference and what you would find more comfortable.
How To Wear a Weightlifting Belt?
To get the weight lifting belt benefits, it’s important to understand how to wear one. So below are a few tips on how to use a weightlifting belt.
If you’ve never used a lifting belt, it might be a bit uncomfortable in the beginning. However, with proper use, you can eventually boost your performance.
When you put on the belt, make sure that it sits well and snug. It should be tight enough for you to not be able to stick your hand between the belt and your abdomen. It will provide good support and will make the belt stay in the same place as you lift. However, it shouldn’t be so tight that you can’t take a deep breath or that you’re cutting off circulation.
Generally, when you wear a belt, it should cover most of the abdominals and erectors, as this will allow maximum intra-abdominal pressure. If you wear it too low, it can start rubbing against the top of the pelvis. And if you wear it too high, it can cause pinching and pressure in the lower abdomen.
As you are learning to get used to the belt, start with changing its position on your torso and find the one that works for you. The position can also depend on the type of training you do. For example, for deadlifts, it’s more comfortable when the belt is around the mid stomach. For squats, you can position it a bit lower, above the iliac crest.
However, the proper use of a weightlifting belt is not only about its position and how tight it is. To get more explosive power, you need to expand your stomach into the belt and then brace against it.
What Are Weight Lifting Belts For? – List of Movements
- Overhead Pressing
- Bench press
- Olympic lifts
Weight training belts are an effective tool for gaining that extra muscle and at the same time staying safe from potential harm. Powerlifters, weightlifters and fitness athletes can gain from its benefits. The best weightlifting belt as of 2019 is the Dark Iron Fitness model. However, there are other worthy belts as well. Choosing one or the other also depends on your personal preferences. We do hope that our weightlifting belt reviews have helped you to get an idea of the available options and to understand what would best suit your needs.