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Old 11-05-2010, 10:06 AM   #41
Kyle Byrne
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Re: Started using a belt for squats and deads

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Originally Posted by Eric Montgomery View Post
Saying a belt isn't "functional" is no different than saying a barbell isn't "functional"--after all, how many real-world situations will have you lifting a perfectly balanced object up from 9" above ground level, which conveniently has a handle of consistent diameter that rotates for you so you don't break your wrists trying to clean it?

Wear a belt or don't wear a belt, no one cares, but continuing to contradict the advice from people who most likely know what they're talking about isn't going to get you anywhere. If you want to keep being a "purist" no one is going to stop you.
We're trying to have a productive conversation. There's really no benefit to anyone making comments like this. If you have knowledge or experience to share then by all means post up. I also feel like you should probably reread my post and then your entire response. I specifically answered all of the questions that you asked me when you responded in my original post that you quoted.

"how would not having worn a belt make you any more prepared to do the movement safely?"

"Your legs are going to be capable to move the weight(because with the belt...no problem), however your core isn't quite up to the task. Wouldn't that kind of set you up for failure? Because now you've allowed yourself to train your legs beyond the capability of your core so the weight is going to go up and then its going to be a gamble whether or not your core will be able to support it. "

^ meaning you're going to hurt yourself trying to lift it instead of getting a buddy to help you lift it. If you're legs can't "out-lift" what your core can handle, you have a better chance of not hurting yourself.

I'm talking about a very specific environment that myself and other soldiers train for. Others that might be in the same situation would be police officers, firefighters, etc. Whether a belt is functional or not has nothing to do with our conversation.
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Old 11-05-2010, 10:33 AM   #42
Eric Lester
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Re: Started using a belt for squats and deads

Kyle, I understand your point and have been very anti-belt for years. However, I was misinformed of the purpose of a belt.

I am reading your concern that a belt would keep your core from growing in strength in proportion to the gains in leg strength. This was also my concern. A muscle imbalance would set us up for injury when applying force outside of the gym.

However, it appears that the argument for the belt is that having something for the abs to push against actually makes it easier for your core to get stronger. The reason to wear a belt is as much core strength as it is leg strength.

I have gotten to the point of squatting just over double bodyweight without the use of a belt. I am looking to add one to my training and see what happens for myself.
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Old 11-05-2010, 02:20 PM   #43
Tamara Cohen
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Re: Started using a belt for squats and deads

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Originally Posted by Eric Montgomery View Post
As previously noted, using a belt makes you stronger without a belt because your stabilizer muscles will get stronger from having something to brace against. It's not like using straps to compensate for a weak grip on deadlifts.
People, please read this part again. When you lift with a belt it makes your lifts WITHOUT a belt stronger also. True story. I don't understand where the confusion is. Read the 70sBig articles again if you missed this the first dozen times. At least Justin explains it in an amusing way.
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Old 11-05-2010, 02:44 PM   #44
Stu Christensen
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Re: Started using a belt for squats and deads

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Originally Posted by Tamara Cohen View Post
People, please read this part again. When you lift with a belt it makes your lifts WITHOUT a belt stronger also. True story. I don't understand where the confusion is. Read the 70sBig articles again if you missed this the first dozen times. At least Justin explains it in an amusing way.
That's what my 1st post said...people have missed it multiple times in this thread. Whatever. You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink....
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Old 11-05-2010, 06:27 PM   #45
Renee Lee
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Re: Started using a belt for squats and deads

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Originally Posted by Stu Christensen View Post
That's what my 1st post said...people have missed it multiple times in this thread. Whatever. You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink....
i'm pretty sure every belt advocate in this thread said that, stu

people that don't want to hear aren't going to listen
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Old 11-05-2010, 07:07 PM   #46
Ryan Ferry
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Re: Started using a belt for squats and deads

I think that something that has been missed is the multiple benefits derived from performing heavy squats and deadlifts. Not only are these two movements applicable to real world situations that closely mimic the actual excercise ie picking up heavy stuff off the ground or putting heavy stuff on your back.
But there is also the myriad number of ways these exercises effect your ability to apply submaximal forces to both your body and external objects in a matter that doesn't necessarily put your spine under a vertical load.

Running, punching, kicking, jumping, throwing,wrasslin bad guys etc are all benefitted by having strong everything. Deadlifting a weight to the limit of your grip and then belting up to lift even more benefits both your grip development and your getting everything stronger development.

And the belt makes you stronger anyway so....
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Old 11-05-2010, 10:39 PM   #47
Ryan Ferry
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Re: Started using a belt for squats and deads

Manner...not matter. Manner. That is all.
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Old 11-10-2010, 05:03 PM   #48
Toby Edison
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Re: Started using a belt for squats and deads

After about 2 years of crossfit I have switched over to powerlifting a year ago. I still do crossfit when I travel--which is about 2-5 times a month at various gyms around the country. I've trained in about 30 crossfit boxes, and about 10 powerlifting gyms across country. Here is what I've learned about belts.

Unless you are using the belt to push against with your core and are taking a large prelift breath, a belt does little to prevent injury or increase lifting capacity. Used properly by holding your breath, to stabilize your core the belt will add weight to your lift and because your core is more stable it will reduce injury. At first I was skeptical about the belt when powerlifting, believing the CF hype that it was a crutch. After using it properly to press my held breath against I would say it is an essential component to any big lift and should be incorporated into crossfit training.

Pressing your breath out to stabilize your core using a belt is an intense ab work out. I've all but abandonded my crossfit situps--replacing my core work with belt compression. A core developed by pushing against the belt is a stronger, more stable core than an abmat developed core.

My powerlifting belt has been discouraged in 2 or 3 crossfit facilities because they fear I will use the belt as a crutch which is misguided. Doing powerlifts without a belt essentially is not doing a powerlift with proper form, if virtuosity is the goal, the belt is required. Its its ironic because I go to the box to train vs the globo gym because they allow chalk--but frown on my belt.

<<<Another limitation of crossfit facilties is when they only have the cheap rubber bumper plates. This means that the bar capacity is full at 4 plates, well below a trained lifters capacity. If you have a box, do your strong guys a favor and buy some cheap iron. With this limitation you will never know what properly used belt will do.>>>

Other posters have stated that the core gives out without a belt before the legs do. This is true unless you have a world class core. So for most of us, training without a belt is not training to full physical capacity.

The belt I've seen most used (and coveted by other powerlifters when I share it) is an Inzer lever belt. The belt you used for highschool football that you bought at big 5 won't work. If you intend on being strong you simply must invest in and learn to use a proper belt, its as essential a proper footwear.
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Old 11-10-2010, 07:30 PM   #49
Michael Loucas
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Re: Started using a belt for squats and deads

I'm going to say that since I got the belt when I started posting here, I've been using it 3 times a week with starting strength. I was struggling with 275x5 without a belt, and I just lifted 305 5-5-5 today with a belt. (With 1 week off of working out due to being sick and other reasons). I still do my light warmups without the belt, I only put it on with my last warmup sets and my work sets on squats, deadlift and press.
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Old 11-11-2010, 02:02 AM   #50
Kyle Byrne
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Re: Started using a belt for squats and deads

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Originally Posted by Tamara Cohen View Post
People, please read this part again. When you lift with a belt it makes your lifts WITHOUT a belt stronger also. True story. I don't understand where the confusion is. Read the 70sBig articles again if you missed this the first dozen times. At least Justin explains it in an amusing way.
I think a lot of folks were misunderstanding my concern. Maybe, I did a poor job of explaining it. I'm not anti-belt at all. I was merely anti-belt in the situation for which i'm training. I appreciate everyones input and I think i'm going to play with the belt a little bit and see how it goes. To restate my main concern is that training with a belt will allow your legs to be able to "outlift" what your core can handle raw. Giving a soldier a better chance of hurting themselves. I understand that a belt will help a lifter pull more weight with and without a belt. my concern was the difference between the two and that the core will potentially see a load that it can't handle because the legs have become stronger with the assistance of the belt.

However poorly I communicated that concern I did get a lot of useful feedback and information. Why this seemed to become an emotional event for some is beyond me? If theories are sound then there shouldn't be an issue questioning them or giving information to support them.
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