Why ever train beltless? Why ever train beltless?

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Thread: Why ever train beltless?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    Default Why ever train beltless?

    From everything I can tell, using a belt while training not only allows you to lift a larger weight, studies I've read show higher muscle activation at the same weights using a belt. From the books and posts I've read on the forum it seems a belt is mostly recommended for the last set of warmups and the work sets. Why wouldn't I also use it for all my warmups (including the bar)?

    And why would anyone ever want to train beltless at all? I see Dan Green etc. frequently doing "beltless" cycles. I can't find any good reason for it, but I also don't seem to see you guys recommend using a belt for 100% of all sets.

    Sorry if this is a repeat question, I searched and couldn't find anything.

  2. #2
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    Mar 2008
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    The belt is a wonderful piece of equipment. However, at light weights its contribution is negligible. You don't really care about higher levels of motor unit recruitment during warm ups. Further, being able to squat without the belt is the equivalent of skill practice. For people that have injured backs, wearing the belt for most or all of the warm ups can often be a good idea. Dan Green is an exceptional athlete at the far end of training advancement. He is attempting to manipulate every variable he can to continue to eek out progress. Training without a belt can provide a way of working hard, although at slightly reduced tonnages. For most people that have progressed into heavier weights, doing the last warm up and work sets with the belt is a good idea. The physical and psychological benefits of wearing a belt are significant.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Campitelli View Post
    The belt is a wonderful piece of equipment. However, at light weights its contribution is negligible. You don't really care about higher levels of motor unit recruitment during warm ups. Further, being able to squat without the belt is the equivalent of skill practice. For people that have injured backs, wearing the belt for most or all of the warm ups can often be a good idea. Dan Green is an exceptional athlete at the far end of training advancement. He is attempting to manipulate every variable he can to continue to eek out progress. Training without a belt can provide a way of working hard, although at slightly reduced tonnages. For most people that have progressed into heavier weights, doing the last warm up and work sets with the belt is a good idea. The physical and psychological benefits of wearing a belt are significant.

    For my competition lifts I now wear a belt from 50% on during warm-ups. If there happens to be any form change when I add a belt I don't want my warm-up reps to be slightly off from my work reps.

  4. #4
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    For whatever reason, Klokov and a handful of other unnamed Olympic lifters I have seen on the internet train beltless a lot. It perplexes me.

  5. #5
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    There's also the chance that although strong, some of these gifted lifters may not be too bright. There's plenty of BS out there against using belt and it could get to them.

  6. #6
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    I am not familiar with the increased muscle activation point, unless you only mean that by virtue of a belt enabling higher weights. What is the argument there? I had always heard the opposite - it helps stabilize the core, therefore the core does not work as hard, therefore the core is not as strong. Sort of like lifting straps and deadlifts with regard to grip strength, but obviously less extreme, the primary benefit of both being that they enable higher weights.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by wdewind View Post
    From everything I can tell, using a belt while training not only allows you to lift a larger weight, studies I've read show higher muscle activation at the same weights using a belt.
    It's no wonder belt positively affects Rectus Abdominis, and maybe External Obliques. However, did you ever see a study that checked activation of the Internal Obliques or Transverse Abdominal? From pure physics POV, it must be the TA that is affected most by the belt, as the belt mimics TA function.

  8. #8
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    Thanks for the reply, Tom

  9. #9
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    I only wear a belt when I attempting maximal weights....I've always trained in a way that allows my core to get stronger as I get stronger in lifts like squats and deads....IMO the belt is over used...I seen guys using the belt too earlier in the strength development which does not allow their torso to get strong...it becomes a crutch....just my opinion

  10. #10
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    Oct 2014
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    I still haven't bought a belt, 3 months into novice, but the basic reason is money. With advice on this forum, I went first with a lifting shoes. The weights seem very heavy to me now, and I do believe I would benefit from a belt. I hope to get one soon.

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