Do you use belts and straps?
- 12-07-2004, 05:39 AM
Do you use belts and straps?
Just curious. I used to use both all the time, but for the past 8 months or so haven't used anything, not even gloves. My hands have gotten much stronger. I hurt my back the other day doing deadlifts, and I think it would've been avoided if I had a belt on, so now I'm thinking about using them again.
- 12-07-2004, 06:07 AM
i have not used a belt in anything for years now, until i recently got into the PLifting side of things and watched videos, every video you will ever watch of lifters doing maximal or near maximal, they all have a belt on , speaks something.
Oh yeah I threw a belt on legday the other day = new squat and DL PR's by 50lbs a piece.finally over 500 in both
so that says something, helped me stay tight in the bottom on squats, something to drive against, and helped my back in DL
you have to do your core work still , but i am sold.
as far as straps go , i havent used them in a while, i think they have there place i.e. heavy db bentoverrows, shrugs etc.
not DL's though just imo
- 12-07-2004, 07:22 AM
Only straps when Im deadlifting or shruging heavy. It help me for my grip first, that's for sure, but also focusing more on the muscles working.
12-07-2004, 11:54 AM
I use straps if my grip is failing me on lifts I know I can get (usually the last 1 or 2 sets on a psycho back day)
I use a belt if my lower back isn't feeling up to the task, mostly on SLDLs.
But I try not to use them if at all possible.
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12-07-2004, 12:18 PM
12-07-2004, 12:19 PM
I use straps on heavy back work. I just like to be able to concentrate on the back muscles and not worry about my grip. I have naturally large forearms so I'm not worried about shorting them on work. I don't use a belt for support, but I do use one to attach extra weight when doing dips.
12-07-2004, 03:27 PM
I only use straps for my last set of heavy SLDL's and shrugs if need be.
I'm not a big fan of them but if not using them takes away from the weight of other lifts then I'll use them accordingly.
12-07-2004, 03:54 PM
12-07-2004, 04:48 PM
Straps only here. I use them only for heavy sets of deads, SLDL's, bent-over rows, dumbell rows, shrugs. I've also tried them on my last set of pull-ups, or if I do weighted pull-ups.
12-07-2004, 05:11 PM
12-09-2004, 07:48 PM
i use straps for deadlifts and shrugs
ive always heard that using a belt eliminates your core and actually makes it weaker.
12-09-2004, 08:18 PM
When I was powerlifting I only used a belt when maxing out, or going really heavy. If you use one all of the time your core strength will suffer. Straps, they help, but they also hinder. It really depends on your needs.
12-10-2004, 03:28 AM
Belt is a must when going to like 5-6 reps and below, straps are evil.
When you can row with the 175lb dumbells without straps you will be ready to leave grasshopper.
12-10-2004, 05:06 PM
I never believed in a belt when doing regular exercise for reps as what's the purpose of doing exercises if you don't want to strengthen your lower back? If your form is ****ed up enough while doing heavy weights that your back is getting tweaked maybe drop some weight and look at the form, not the weight belt? I feel the same way about straps to a point. Certainly at some point either or both may become necessary but why give yourself a crutch when it most likely isn't necessary? When going for a one rep max on squats or deads or other 'olympic' movements I use a belt as a precautionary measure.
The thing that amuses me most about avid weight belt fans is the guys who use the belt while doing curls or bench press. Are they afraid that moving their arms is going to hurt their back? Then again these are the same guys who think they're badasses curling 2 25lb plates and the bar by doing the ol "in the squat rack swing your entire body with the weight so it's more like part of a clean than a curl."
12-10-2004, 05:31 PM
The belt is a must man, when your squat and deadlift go up you will see. A long time ago, when I was squatting 315 for reps and deadlifting about the same, I thought belts were silly too... Fast forward, I'm handling about twice that much weight for low reps and without the belt (and at this point knee wraps) it's just not happening.Originally Posted by Talon
12-10-2004, 10:41 PM
I agree with both Talon and Exnihilo. You gotta find that balance. I don't like using the belt or straps for most sets but will use them towards the end of the exercise or if I feel I really need them. Like Ex said once you start lifting more weight the need for such precautionary methods increases. Look at a guy who can only do 3 reps with 225 and then look at Ronnie Coleman Squat 800lbs for 2 reps. The body isn't really meant to go to extremes so whereing a belt, straps, wraps, neoprenes, etc. sometimes becomes necessary during the advance stages of lifting.
12-11-2004, 08:49 AM
12-12-2004, 04:21 PM
Thats a very interesting point. It makes me wonder whether certain frames are more prone to lower back injuries on certain exercises. I'm 6'4 and it just seems I got a lot further to go on deadlifts than guys with short legs and short torsos. Makes me think I have a greater chance of hurting my lower back on deadlifts than those guys, as I have a larger area for the lower back to stabalize.Originally Posted by MaNiaK1027
12-12-2004, 05:36 PM
Rob, try deadlifting sumo style if you feel your back is under a lot of stress. Also, keep a strong arch and really focus on pulling the weight "back" as opposed to standing up with it.
12-13-2004, 01:16 AM
Ok, I'll give it a try sumo style when I'm good to deadlift again. Thanks for the advice.Originally Posted by exnihilo
12-13-2004, 08:53 AM
I never used straps until this last year. And, I only use them on a few excersizes such as rack deads, heavy BB shrugs and heavy DB rows. I don't have to worry about losing my grip and can instead concentrate on the excersize. But, I see guys that use them on almost all pulling movements and I would not want to depend on them to that degree.
After I turned 40 I started to have knee problems with heavy squats. To the point I thought I would have to give it up. I started wrapping my knees on all squats at first and the pain went away after a couple of months. Now, I wrap them only on weights above 300 and I have no lingering pain and can squat 455 pain free.
As far as belts, I only wear a belt on heavy PL type excersizes, deads, squats, shrugs, and even push press.
12-19-2004, 10:30 PM
I suppose straps could be useful when your main muscles overpower your grip, but what good is having extremely powerful back muscles if you can't use them anyway because your grip is weak? The grip on the bar is a very important and integral part of a lift IMHO. I suppose they are bad from a functional or athletic perspective, but for bodybuilding purposes could come in handy
12-19-2004, 11:02 PM
i use straps on barbell and one arm rows, db shrugs, and sometimes pulldowns, but never on deads or pullups.
12-20-2004, 01:35 PM
I only use straps when doing heavy dl and shrugs. never use a belt even on heavy squats. I try and up my weights on squats so that tendons, ligaments, etc also strengthen.
If I were going strictly for strength I would probably use the belt some....but I really dont like usin em at all...
12-20-2004, 03:01 PM
Seriously, I can't stress enough man. Wear the damned belt on heavy squats and deadlifts.Originally Posted by msclbldrguy
You are going to injure yourself and be wishing for a long time that you had just worn the damned thing.
12-20-2004, 03:16 PM
No belt yet, however I used to use straps for DLs..however after incorporating farmer walks into my routine, I've strengthened my grip and haven't used the straps in ages..
12-20-2004, 05:42 PM
Originally Posted by exnihilo
do it or you could be sorry, it is safety equipment, not cheating,
All you guys will be laid up when you pop a hernia While I am getting stronger.
Look at any , i mean any, lifter in any magazine, or internet video,
I mean dudes that r movin weight, if they are around maximal they r wearing a belt.
I didn; wear one til I thought of the possibilities.
01-03-2005, 02:56 PM
I thought both were useless until I got this compressed nerve in my arm which makes my last 2 fingers go numb and really weak. So now I wear straps and I wish that I started before, these things are awesome. My deads have gone up and all my back lifts have gone up because my hands and forearms arent worn out from hanging on to the bar for dear life anymore. I love these things.
01-12-2005, 11:03 AM
belt on heavy squats and deads and straps on heavy shrugs and 1 arm db rows and bent barbell rows.although if i had a grip problem i would not use them so i could strengthen my grip.i would just use them on the sets where my grip failed.
01-16-2005, 11:20 PM
02-01-2005, 01:02 AM
Actually more than belt a proper technique and the right amount of load is important. But that’s obvious. Since one cannot always judge the right amount of load or may not be in excellent condition, using a belt on heavy lifts (squats, DLs) that involve back is wise. Many guys use them for bench presses too which I don’t think is at all necessary. It’s become a style statement.
02-06-2005, 07:07 PM
Im actually starting to use chalk on back day for rows, chins, etc. I can definatley pull more weight for more reps when Im not focusing on grip though. I think its best to have a balanace - so lately Ive only been using straps on my last heavy set.
As far as belts go, I always wear one when I feel my safety could be compromised.
02-07-2005, 01:36 AM
I think a belt is necessary when going really heavy on Deadlifts and Squats. If it was not you would not see elite class powerlifters using em. One problem I do see is most peopledo not know how to use a belt properly. That includes myself till I read some articles from dave tate and louie simmons bout sucking the air into your stomach and pushing your abs into the belt. Used right it will help protect your spine which you only have one of.
02-15-2005, 11:09 AM
Many people say that straps weaken your grip but I forgot mine last deadlift day, I went ahead and tried my normal weight and amazingly enough my grip felt stronger ALOT stronger I did the same amount of weight and reps as with straps.
02-21-2005, 09:56 AM
About 10 years ago I herniated a lower back disc doing squats with wrong form. With 135. Yes. Heck, you may laugh, but everyone has been a newbie.
The doc said if I lifted again I would end up in a wheelchair for the rest of my life, the situation was so bad. I didn't listen to him.
4 years later, I was deadlifting 405 for 4 and squatting 225 *ALL* the way down for 12. I know, those aren't huge numbers, but they are what I did. Still for a guy scheduled for a wheelchair, that's pretty good. Those lifts were done with a belt.
Now I am much stronger overall, but can only deadlift 335. BECAUSE I DON'T WEAR THE BELT. Maybe I should, or maybe I would go too heavy. Right now, without the belt, the weights simply don't increase.
I'm OK with that, I'm not aiming for any specific goals, just keeping in good shape. But I have a question : if I take up the belt, will I REALLY get stronger? I know I will lift much more. 405 easy, maybe 495 in a couple months.
So in essence I'm wondering if, FOR SAFETY PURPOSES, a dl of 335 without belt is any less risky than a dl of 405 with a belt, and so on........?
Any insight would be very welcome.
02-24-2005, 11:51 AM
i am a believer that your grip is a fuse that gives way before your back or something else,ie hernia, that is why i dont use straps,
also your elbows are braced when you have to grip the weight to hold, not so much with straps, its more like your wrists are holding the weight rather than your digits.
and deadlifts train everything, not just your legs and back.
just alittle interesting note:
the strongman series, stopped letting them use wraps.
02-24-2005, 12:03 PM
03-05-2005, 11:29 AM
03-05-2005, 02:23 PM
intra-abdominal pressure when under stress, same reason you get red when you max or something, instead of blood trying to get out its your guts, path of least resistance.
lots of people rely on a belt instead of their abs,
03-05-2005, 06:00 PM
Learn to use the belt properly (don't fix it too snugly) and take a huge gut breath, then push your abs out into your belt. Also, get a GOOD belt, I like buckle belts from plgearonline.com. Train the hell out of your abs too though, with heavy weights for low reps.
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