The bodybuilding belt is used for strength training. It provides stabilization of the lumbar spine, increases the safety of performing complex exercises. The bodybuilding belt also limits the work of the muscles responsible for stabilization. What does workout with a bodybuilding belt mean and how to use it? See the attached video, what the expert says about this subject!
An exercise belt , or a bodybuilding belt (looking similar to an ordinary belt, though much wider) is used primarily by bodybuilders, powerlifters, and crossfit . The powerlifting belt has a fixed width (about 10 cm) along its entire length and is thicker than the bodybuilding belt. The bodybuilding belt is in turn wider at the lumbar section, and narrower at the belly - it is the most often used by people training at the gym, also crossfitowcy.
What Does The Bodybuilding Belt Give You?
When lifting heavy weights, there is intense tension in the abdominal and back muscles, which are designed to protect the lumbar spine during training - to stabilize it. If the muscles are not strong enough, the tension may be too high for them and may result in, for example, protruding the disc or hernia. Too weak stabilizing muscles can also lead to too much muscular tension in the limbs, which also threatens injury.
The bodybuilding belt is supposed to prevent this type of danger - it increases the pressure of the abdominal press and better stabilization of the lumbar spine . Research conducted in 2001 by scientists from the University of California 1 showed that the group of 14 healthy men participating in them performed squats with the bodybuilding belt more dynamically and for themselves felt easier than without a belt.
On the other hand, training with a bodybuilding belt gives artificial muscle stabilization in the central section and stops engaging them to work. This weakness can also result in injuries, among others spinal injuries, sprains of the ankle.
Is It Worth To Train With A Bodybuilding Belt?
Opinions about training with an exercise belt are divided: some are convinced that more harm than good, others point out that it makes it much easier to do exercises with a high load, which require intense work of the muscles stabilizing the spine.
The answer to the question about the use of a bodybuilding belt is: worth it, but remembering that ...
1. The use of the bodybuilding belt is recommended only when working with heavy weights - when we use 80% or more of the maximum weight during exercise.
2. Using the bodybuilding belt is not recommended for beginners - their stabilizing muscles are not yet strong enough, they do not work with heavy loads yet.
3. The bodybuilding belt is to increase the training possibilities, so it should be used only when trying to beat your own records and for specific exercises.
4. These exercises include: deadlift , squeezing the bar (e.g. above the head, lying down, before the chest, behind the back of the neck), squats (with the barbell held on the neck, on the Smith machine).
5. If you are practicing with a bodybuilding belt, remember to include (or increase their number / intensity) exercises to strengthen the abdominal muscles in your training plan.
6. It is best to remove or loosen the bodybuilding belt after each repetition, it is definitely not advisable to perform with the belt more than 10 repetitions or one series of the exercise.
7. Do not wear a bodybuilding belt for the whole workout, but only for the most difficult series with the highest load.
Is It Worth Using An Exercise Belt During Training?
See what our expert JacekBilczyński, personal trainer, physiotherapist and dietitian is talking about the advantages and disadvantages of wearing an exercise belt!
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How To Set Up A Bodybuilding Belt?
A well-established bodybuilding belt does not limit movements and does not cause discomfort to the wearer. We should put the belt for exercises on the bellybutton line and before doing it, do as much exhale as possible and lightly pull the stomach. The belt should be fastened very tightly, but not so much as to make it impossible to inhale and exhale freely. During the exercise with the bodybuilding belt, you should not do apnea exercises, but breast-type breathing is recommended - the upper chest areas move when you inhale.
An excessively tightened belt can cause pressure on the body, get stuck in it, too loose and in turn will not meet the expected function.
Which Bodybuilding Belt Should You Choose?
1. Size and width
Choosing the bodybuilding belt is best to consult a specialist - your trainer or a person working in a sports store. The belt should be tried first, so if you intend to buy it on the Internet, we advise you to visit the store in advance. The exercise belts have different sizes and widths - you have to choose them individually. The choice of bodybuilding belts for women is smaller, after all it should not be a problem to choose the S-belt, and less often also the unisex XS.
2. Workmanship and method of installation
Bodybuilding belts are made of either natural leather (bovine or calf) or plastic (neoprene). Bodybuilders most often indicate that leather belts are more durable.
Belts for exercise can be fastened with buckles, velcro, worn both on the body and clothing. It is worth remembering, however, that if you want to put on a "bare body" belt, this may result in irritation of the skin, especially in the case of a belt fastened with a buckle.
How To Care For The Bodybuilding Belt?
The exercise belt, especially the leather belt, requires proper care.Putting it in the wardrobe right after the training is not a good idea - it is enough to, for example, hang a belt through a chair and wait until it is dry at room temperature. The belt is best washed with a slightly moistened cloth - without detergents that could damage it.
It is also worth remembering that when the belt is clearly rubbed and the material from which it was made loses its properties, it should be changed because it will no longer perform its function properly - stabilize the lumbar spine.
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How much does a bodybuilding belt cost?
Although bodybuilding belts are available in many gyms, it is worth investing in your own - we will be sure that not only will be properly selected for the construction of our body, but it will not wear out so quickly. And we will miss waiting until another person stops using it.
The prices of good quality products start from 0-40 dollars, although there are also those for which we will pay 100-150 dollars (unfortunately it often happens that the smaller - less common - size, the higher the price of the belt).