How to choose a good weightlifting belt?
Intense training with improper performance of some exercises can lead to serious injuries. And some professional athletes and amateurs, to avoid injury, use a variety of devices. One of them is a weightlifting belt. Do you really need it? And how to choose it?
What it is?
The weightlifting belt looks like a regular belt, but has more impressive dimensions. This device is actively used by bodybuilders, as well as ordinary people who perform strength exercises with weights. It is believed that such belts were used in ancient times, but there is no exact confirmation of this.
Why do we need a weightlifting belt?
What is a weightlifting belt for? The fact is that when performing strength exercises with burdening, a huge load falls on the spine, and this may well lead to its injury. But the spinal column has the natural support that the muscles provide.
Behind it is supported and fixed by the muscles of the back, and in front by the abdominal cavity, or rather, by the pressure inside it. This pressure increases dramatically with muscle contraction. But often when lifting heavy objects (the same bar), the person directs all his forces to accomplish the task and forgets everything else.
As a result, the abdomen and with it the abdominal muscles relax, the pressure drops, and the spine remains without support from the front. So, the weightlifting belt is designed precisely to artificially create increased pressure inside the abdominal cavity and thereby maintain the spinal column in a normal position.
Who needs it and when?
A weightlifting belt is required for beginners seeking fast results. If you increase the weight of the burden too quickly, then the muscles and spine will not have time to get used to such loads, which can lead to injuries. And in this case, the belt will come to the rescue.
Weightlifting belt will have to be the way when doing exercises with lifting weights, such as deadlift, squatting with a barbell and so on. It is these exercises that require full spinal support andtension of muscles of a press.
Another case in which the use of a belt would be appropriate is training with maximum weight. A large mass is a huge load on the spine, and therefore requires additional support. Wearing a belt is worth it when you are working with a mass of approximately 85-90% of the limit (that is, the one you can lift).
It is worth paying attention to such a device to those who do not pay enough attention to working out the abdominal muscles. If the press is weak, then he simply can not cope with their tasks. If the muscles are developed well and cope with the load, then you will not need a belt.
How to wear it correctly?
How to use weightlifting belt? Just worth mentioning that wearing it constantly and worn throughout the entire workout is not exactly worth it, it will negatively affect the work of the muscles. First, they will stop working normally and with a constant wearing of the belt can gradually atrophy.
In this case, if you abruptly abandon the belt, you will certainly get a spinal injury. Secondly, in the belt the muscles work differently. If without it they contract to draw in the belly, then in the belt, on the contrary, you will try to stick out your stomach.In the end, after giving up the device, you will not be able to do the exercises with the weight.
A few rules for using the belt:
- Wear a belt before performing exercises that involve holding weight above your head, as well as those that are performed with a burden in a standing position.
- After the exercise, remove the belt.
- When using such a device, pay special attention to the additional development of the abdominal muscles.
- You should not perform in the belt more than 5-10 repetitions. You can perform one approach in a belt with a maximum weight, then remove it and reduce weight.
- When you can take a lot of weight and get used to it, begin to gradually abandon the belt, reducing the number of repetitions performed in it.
Which belt to choose?
How to choose a weightlifting belt? The most important points that are worth paying attention to when buying:
- With regard to gender differences, the belts for women and for men do not exist, they are all universal.
- Pay attention to the shape of the belt and its width. The belt, narrow in the front and wide in the back, will provide additional support to the lower back and will reliably protect against injuries.In addition, it is very convenient to use it when performing exercises involving the forward bending. Such devices are widely used in bodybuilding. But the belt, having the same width along the entire length, is usually more durable, massive and strong. It should be placed in the lower abdomen, closer to the pelvis. Such a device is usually used in powerlifting. But exercises with an inclination in this belt are uncomfortable.
- Be sure to purchase when studying the belt buckle. There are several options: plain buckle, velcro or carbine. Velcro - the most unreliable option, which is suitable only to raise the minimum weight. But this fastener is quick and easy to unfasten and fasten. But over time, it will certainly become worthless. The classic buckle is quite strong, but with significant burdens, the holes can stretch, be damaged and tear. It would be better if such holes are provided with metal rivets. The most reliable, durable and durable option - belt with a carabiner. It is quite easy to fasten and unfasten, it can not unbutton itself and will last for a long time.
- The material of which the weightlifting belt is made is important. Today, you can find belts made of leather, leatherette and various synthetic materials in sports equipment stores. The best option is leather. It is durable, but at the same time flexible and therefore stretches and adjusts to changes in the volume of the abdomen. Synthetic materials, as a rule, are not very flexible, although they are often durable.
- Pay attention to sewing a belt. More durable will be a multi-layered product, additionally reinforced with zigzag or shaped firmware.
- It is important to determine your size. When buying in a store, it is better to try on. When purchasing a belt from an online store, carefully study the manufacturer’s dimensional grid. But remember that the volume of the abdomen can vary, so choose a model with the ability to change the position of the fastener.
- The price of a quality weightlifting belt cannot be too low. The cost usually varies from 1 to 3-5 thousand rubles.
Successful and safe training you!
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