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Jason Nunn wrote:
Personally, the deadlift is a competitive event. Not just an exercise. So, I wear a belt so I can lift the heaviest weight possible. That being said, I'll still go up to my first working set without one.
I just recently started learning belted lifting.
I do what Jason does, just with lighter weights than he does, lol...
IDK, I haven't had a long enough sample with the belt to compare to without, but I will say, having that belt to take a big breath and push against has stopped this nagging little back irritation I used to get.
My erectors are not weak by any means.
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How should I behave if I train without a belt? Should I let my abdominals to adapt themselves to the load without thinking about it? Or I should draw my belly in, as described in this article:
http://www.t-nation.com/free_online_art ... ess_part_3
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I recommend trying what I call "the worlds greatest weight belt". It is simply a piece of kite string. Place the kite string around your waist at the belly button level. Exhale and draw your belly button in slightly, just enough to notice that it has moved toward your spine and that you now have more definition along the oblique line. With the string snug around your belly now, tie the string in a knot.
As you perform your exercises in the gym, you should always inhale and draw your umbilicus off the string prior to exerting any force. This teaches the brain to activate the TVA first. If you are lifting any significant load, you will cross the stabilization threshold,(23) at which time you will go from segmental to gross stabilization. This will be identified as visually observable activation of the external oblique and rectus abdominis.
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Draw in/push out is the big debate. I push out, take a deep breath, then tighten my abs in a pulling-in sort of way. Basically, do what you would do if some big dude was about to slug you in the gut.
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Belt's are fairly pointless beyond competition, imo - I'm pretty sure they've shown it doesn't help prevent injuries as well.
If the belt helps you lift more weight and you're not competing, then I don't see the point of it - just do leg press/other stabilized leg movements if you want more stimulus on your legs and can't handle the weight.