Weight Vest Ultimate Guide
Ready to invest in a weighted vest? This complete guide will show you how to choose the best weighted vest, and take your training to the next level.
If you are looking for a weighted vest, chances are your are looking for harder trainings that couldn’t make use of normal weight like dumbbells, or weight plates. Bodyweight based exercises like calisthenics, running, martial arts, and sports are the best use cases for weighted vest to shine.
In Gravgear, we believe versatility and durability should be the key factors for a great weight vest. Not only should a weight vest be compatible to most of your workout styles with comfort, it should also ages well and lasts through intense training session as long as possible.
We’ll cover why, when, and how to use a weighted vest in this comprehensive guide.
What is weighted vest
Simply put, a weighted vest is a vest that you secure around your torso, with weight.
The weight can be in many forms and material. Sand and iron nuggets being the most famous. The point of weight vest is that it can add extra resistance to your body while releasing your hands (barbell) or waist (dip belt).
It is a famous equipment especially to those who practice calisthenics or bodyweight training. We all know the how lightweight our body can feel, after dropping the heavy you carry for the whole day. Weighted vest works the same concept too.
Make your body adapts to the extra resistance for a period, reap the “lighter” effect after discarding the weight. Because you’ve just become stronger.
What makes a good weight vest
Knowing how to choose the best weight vest out of the flooding options is critical. We've listed some criteria below. Anything that checks all the boxes, is a good weighted vest. We’ll use Grav Weight Vest (obviously) to demonstrate all the following points. So these are what should you look for in a good weighted vest:
- Adjustable weight and optimal fitting
- Become comfortable parts of your body
- Versatile to all kind of workout
- Stick to body all the time
- Build to last a lifetime
1. Adjustable weight and optimal fitting
There is nothing wrong about fixed weight vest, it’s just that you cannot adjust the intensity to your liking to suit your capability. Say you want to practiced some weighted pull-up, what you can do if you can’t manage the full weight just yet?
- with adjustable weight vest: remove some weight from the vest and continue.
- with fixed weight vest: you only can move down to easier progression, such as weighted Australian pull-up.
You bet, the one with weighted training is going progress much faster.
You might not be aware, our body sizes changes all the time. Especially when you are in the middle of major body transformation plan, gaining muscle or losing weight.
Grav weight vest features a belt with big range of adjustment. it can fit maximum 160cm (you’ll have to hit at least 120kg to to be this big) around the torso’s mid-section. And it can go as narrow as you want it to be.
2. Become comfortable parts of your body
We uses two factors to judge how comfortable is a weighted vest.
- It should not wearing your down before your workout does.
- It should feel lighter when putting on the torso
A heavy padding shoulder straps are the key here. So you can be vested for extended period without the straps cut in the shoulders.
Well-padded straps also increase contact surface on the shoulder, distributes the weight evenly throughout the whole body. This effectively trains the full body, instead of just exhausting the shoulder.
3. Versatile to all kind of workout
It is better to know what you are going to use the weight vest for, before investing in one. Why not get one vest and rule them all?
Grav weight vest is compact and short profile. It covers the upper portion of torso, the abdominal section remain unrestrained. The minimal design also helps a great deal in heat dissipation.
It goes well with aerobic exercises like running and martial art, or high intensity strength training like calisthenics and crossfit.
4. Stick to body all the time
The whole point of using weighted vest is that, we want the extra resistance to move along with our movement. It supposed to become part of our body. It supposed to attach firmly with snug fit.
Imagine doing dynamic workout like burpee. A loose-fit weight vest will keep on hitting on the chest and back. You don’t want that unnecessary momentum as it could risk injury. Not to say it will be distracting and annoying as well.
5. Build to last a lifetime
A good training equipment should be your training buddy for life, weight vest is no exception. Premium material and lifetime support makes sure our product stands the best chance to last their longest lifespan.
That’s why we use Cordura fabric to enclose the thick TPE foam with professional lining. You can train vigorously with the vest and it will still look almost the same even after years of usage (we’ve a 2 years old vest and still going strong).
If something goes wrong with your weight vest (or any other product from us), and it is not due to wear and tear. Don’t fret, it is protected with our proud lifetime warranty. We’ll send you a new one!
What does a weight vest do
Okay, now you know what does it take to be a good weight vest. But what is purpose of using one? Working out with weighted vest gives you bigger gain by training harder, in shorter time. Burn fat, build muscle, skill progression, and more. Read on for the explanation.
Make your trainings harder
The lesser the gravity has effect on you, the stronger you are. It is simple as that.
So training with weighed vest is reverse-engineering the process. You add extra weight during a training session for a period. After that, you will immediately notice two things:
- You feel lighter the first moment without the weight.
- You muscles are exhausted at deeper extend.
Weighted training not only make your body adapts to the extra weight by working harder (that’s why the lighter feel immediately after). It also squeezing the most juice from your muscle to overcome the extra resistance. Bigger strength gain is really the only way out here.
Break fitness plateaus
Strength progression is everything when it comes to bodyweight training. Sometimes it lacks a good progression exercise in the middle of two movements.
For example, people suggest you have to at least able to do 15 pull-ups in a row before attempting muscle-up. But the strength from the 15 pull-ups might not be enough and you can hardly move the number up anymore. This is when you need to add some weight in the routine.
Throw in a weight vest and continue the pull-up. Your number will drop at start, keep at it until you can do 15 weighted pull-up (which is a great feat!). Chances are, you are able to score your first muscle-up.
Shorter workout time and more efficiency
For a person who never try weighted vest before, just wearing one and sitting still is already tiring after five minutes. Heart pumping faster, breath more rapid, shoulder amd core start to sore. This is the sign the body is triggered to accommodate the higher intensity you’ve put on.
Quality is everything in fitness. And intensity is the key for a quality workout. Weight vest is born for leveling up (any) workout intensity and saves you time. You can burn the same amount of calories while slashing half your workout time.
Promote better posture
Additional weight works wonder in exposing the weakness in poor posture, such as:
- rounded shoulder
- flat back
- fead held forward
You will notice the immediate discomfort the moment you put on a weight vest.
You might not notice these weakness because your body are used to it for a long time. The extra weight introduce the uneasy feeling and make your body to adjust and combat against it.
This is a perk many tend to overlook, having something constantly reminding you for the correct posture is priceless to any workout.