The Dos And Don’ts Of Wearing Weight Belts

If you are working out to improve your strength, a custom weightlifting belt can be an important addition to your exercise equipment collection. In fact, weight belts offer a wide variety of benefits. They can reduce stress on your lower back as you lift and even prevent back injuries while you lift. Men's Health even reports that they're a mainstay for Olympic weightlifting competitions. However, before you put one on and start lifting, consider these important dos and don'ts. 

Don't Overdo It When Lifting

When you have a weightlifting belt on, you may feel stronger and more confident in your own capabilities. That's a good thing, but be mindful of your limitations. If you are new to weightlifting, start with a light weight, then increase the amount you lift slowly over time. According to Self, only reach for a heavier weight when you can complete all your weight-lifting exercises with the proper form. 

Do Try New Exercises With Instruction and Supervision

Always enlist the health of an experienced, certified personal trainer to learn new weight-lifting exercises and techniques. It's easy to hurt yourself when you're lifting something heavy, so don't pick up a weight that you can't easily manage. Although your weightlifting belt can make it easier to pick up a heavy weight, it isn't foolproof. The guidance of a trainer who can let you know when you are going in the wrong direction can prevent major injuries. 

Don't Tighten the Belt Too Much

A customized weightlifting belt works by increasing intra-abdominal pressure. Since it stabilizes your midsection, it can also feel good to wear it during your workout. Some people mistakenly think that tightening the belt can make it even more powerful, but that isn't so. Your abdominal muscles need room to contract. So, while you do want the weightlifting belt to be stuck, never tighten it to the point that it feels restrictive.

Do Follow Proper Form on All Exercises

Wearing a weightlifting belt doesn't replace proper form and technique. Take the time to learn and practice proper form when lifting weights. That will help you enjoy this form of exercise for years to come without injuring yourself. If you just try to jump in and lift weights quickly without learning proper form, you can cause permanent injuries to your body.

Finally, The Washington Post reports that weight-lifting can help you avoid injuries and stay independent as you age. Follow these dos and don'ts for protection as you lift weights and increase your strength. Not only can it protect your back, but it may also improve your performance. Just be sure to follow all the instructions that come with your weightlifting belt and always talk to your doctor before starting a new workout routine.