After knowing the advantages of using a weighted vest, the next thing to do is to know what is the right vest for you. If you’re looking to buy a high-quality weighted vest, these are the following helpful tips:
1. Know Your Goal
Before starting your fitness journey with a weighted vest, it is important to know your goal. ‘Why do you need a weighted vest?’ People have different purposes for using a vest. Some people use it because they want to lose weight. Others want to increase muscle mass while some people want to maintain their physique.
If your aim is to gain some muscle, or improve strength, you should go for a heavier vest. If you’re into cardio training, have a lighter and non-bulky vest. Cardio training involves cycling, jogging, walking, and high-intensity interval training. Note that energising your cardiovascular system doesn’t require a lot of weight.
2. Know Your Current Fitness Status
Knowing your goal isn’t enough. Using too heavy weights can lead to injury. Whatever your purpose is, it is essential to know your current fitness status. You should select a weight that your body can support without getting injured. Weights that are too heavy can damage your joints and muscles. It can also pose a risk to your spine.
It is also important to observe your posture. Improper posture like having uneven shoulders show that the weights being used are too heavy. This might also mean that you aren’t used to wearing vests yet. If you have improper posture, it is important to know why this happens and make the right adjustments to correct your posture.
3. Know Your Body Shape
It is also necessary to know your body shape. Using the inappropriate vest would make you feel uncomfortable while working out. There are vests that are especially designed for men with wider shoulders, muscular builds, and for those who are thinner men with longer limbs. You can also find vests that are designed for men having round bodies with large waists.
There are also weighted vests for women. This is when body curves and breasts are taken into consideration. There are two types of vests for women. First is the one which can be worn at the shoulders which helps to maintain the right shoulders and postures. The other one is the “Y” shape in front which is designed for chest support while training.
4. Know How Sweaty You Are
People differ in the way they sweat. This depends on different factors such as hormones, glands, surroundings, and level of hydration. You should know how sweaty you are when buying a weighted vest and then take into consideration the material, ventilation and breathability of the vest when finding one.
Mesh weighted vests are for those who perspire more. This vest is made with breathable material, making it best for you if you are a sweaty person. While Kevlar-made vests are for those who don’t perspire too much.
Adjustable Weights vs Fixed Weights
There are several types of weighted vests to choose from. But there are two main types of vests that you can pick from that are fit for your fitness training. These are the adjustable weighted vest and the fixed weighted vest.
Adjustable Weighted Vest
This type of vest allows you to increase or decrease the weight you’ll be using. Adjustable weighted vests consist of small pockets over the front and back that can be packed with flat steel weights or sandbags. You can have them when you purchase the vest. The weights are perfectly fitted in the pockets for a secured workout.
This vest has various weight spans. Lighter vests range around 4-10 pounds (1.8-4.5kg). Heavier vests would weigh approximately 40-500 pounds (18-226kg). Adjustable weight vests are more adaptable than the fixed weighted vests. The downside of this is you may have extra movements in your body while running, and have limited portability in particular physical activities.
Fixed Weighted Vest
This type of vest is predetermined. These are commonly used for cardio routines. But they can also be used for other physical fitness activities, too. You can just wear it and then you’re ready to go. It has a smoother and smaller design. These vests cover a smaller portion of your body, and they don’t appear like an actual vest.
Fixed weighted vests come in 1.8, 4.5, 13 or 18 kg. Most runners use weighted vests that weigh about 10 pounds. The upside of this type of vest is it is more close-packed and can fit comfortably to the body for running. The downside is, it is restricted in weight. You are not allowed to adjust it according to your desired weight.
It is important to know the perfect vest that you will use in your fitness routine. Never overwork yourself with overly heavy weights. Weight vests should not be heavier than 10 percent of the weight of your body. Work out safely with weighted vests.