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  • Weight lifting belts

    Anyone use one? When I lift to failure now it's my core (abs on squat, abs/lower back on deadlift) that gives out first, rather than my legs (like when I first started lifting).

    I guess if I had a belt supporting my core this would allow me to lift heavier/more reps thus working my legs more. I don't want to lose out on a core workout though! Thoughts?

  • #2
    I would say if your core gives out you are not ready to lift more. Functional lifting requires the whole body. Try adding some exercises that target your core like planks, supermen, back raises. My trainer would not let me squat more unless my back was in correct form.

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    • #3
      If you use a belt properly, you work the core more rather than less.
      The Champagne of Beards

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      • #4
        I would say if your core gives out you are not ready to lift more.
        This was my concern. I'm quite happy to proceed slowly (as I've been doing all along).

        If you use a belt properly, you work the core more rather than less.
        Could you elaborate on this please?

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        • #5
          Check this link: The weightlifting belt: friend or foe? | Nutrition consultant

          Here's a relevant tidbit:

          "Given that the purpose of a belt is to allow greater abdominal contraction and increased pressure within the abdominal and thoracic cavities, a belt which is the same width all the way round would appear to be the most optimal design, though heavy weights have certainly been moved whilst using the tapered variety."

          Hope it helps!
          The Champagne of Beards

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          • #6
            Nobody needs a lifting belt except for the heaviest lifts! But, I always use it in the gym anyway, because it gives me some information about my waist! My own lifting belt has holes for every inch, and when I pull it on in the gym, I get important feedback about how my diet works. I also notice how it becomes more lose at the end of the workout due to water loss etc...
            "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

            - Schopenhauer

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Gorbag View Post
              Nobody needs a lifting belt except for the heaviest lifts! But, I always use it in the gym anyway, because it gives me some information about my waist! My own lifting belt has holes for every inch, and when I pull it on in the gym, I get important feedback about how my diet works. I also notice how it becomes more lose at the end of the workout due to water loss etc...
              I only use mine for my final work sets (on a 5/3/1 style program, so these are the heaviest sets) on Deadlift and Squats. But I work out at home, so I don't have to carry the thing around the whole time.
              The Champagne of Beards

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              • #8
                I use one , not too tight, to remind me to think about my form on dead lifts.

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                • #9
                  Only on deadlifts for heavier weight
                  Free your mind, and your Grok will follow!

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by zilog View Post
                    I guess if I had a belt supporting my core this would allow me to lift heavier/more reps thus working my legs more. I don't want to lose out on a core workout though! Thoughts?
                    Others have already mentioned this, but I'll throw my 2 cents in. The purpose of a belt is not to support your back and/or abs. The purpose of a belt is to provide an external resistance for your abs to push against, such that you create a harder contraction, and thus better stability of the spine. A correct belt used correctly will actually make your abs work harder, and will actually make your abs stronger. A proper belt is the same width all around, typically 4 inches. Do not buy one of those wide in the back, narrow in the front things from Sports Authority. You want a thick leather belt of the same width. Companies like Inzer and Best Belts make good ones.

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                    • #11
                      That's great info, thanks guys. I never thought about it like that. I will get a belt, but restrict it's use to my final work set (I also do 531).

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                      • #12
                        ..
                        Last edited by zilog; 04-05-2013, 05:09 AM.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by zilog View Post
                          That's great info, thanks guys. I never thought about it like that. I will get a belt, but restrict it's use to my final work set (I also do 531).
                          For the first several workouts use the belt for every set, this will help you get used to it, and let you find the most comfortable position. You don't want your heavy squat set to be the first time you've ever use a belt.

                          Also, you know about and use the Valsalva maneuver, right?

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                          • #14
                            Yep, good point, I will make sure to do that. Yes, breathing is sorted - Starting Strength is my training bible (if though I don't use the program!)

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by zilog View Post
                              Yep, good point, I will make sure to do that. Yes, breathing is sorted - Starting Strength is my training bible (if though I don't use the program!)
                              You can search the startingstrength forums about the belt thing then. Rip is definitely on the record about the issue.
                              The Champagne of Beards

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