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I’ve put the Inzer belt vs Pioneer belt head to head against each other, so you can pick the ideal lifting belt for you!
So is the Inzer or Pioneer belt better? I’ve been using the Inzer Forever Lever Belt for over 13 years now and it has never failed me once. The belt is designed to be 4 inches wide at the back with 10 mm thickness, which is competition-approved if you’re a powerlifter, and is meant to withstand a lot of wear and tear.
Read on, if you want to know more about the two belts and which one to go for in every situation!
Table of Contents
A Brief Review of Inzer Weightlifting Belts
Reviewing both brands is an excellent way to get introduced to lifting belts and have a hands-on experience of the two companies’ items before we dive into our head to head comparison!
Let’s start by having a brief look at what Inzer Lifting Belts has to offer in terms of the company’s background, its best options on the market, as well as a look at the belt’s pros and cons.
About the Company
Inzer Advance Designs is an American Powerlifting Gear Company that was found in 1989 in Longview, Texas.
The powerlifting gear-oriented company is known for making premium quality powerlifting gear and essentials, such as lifting sleeves and wrap, deadlift suits, singlets, and more.
However, what the company is most popular with is its superior arsenal of powerlifting belts. The company sells its belts under the sub-brand “Forever”.
One of the things that make this company popular among powerlifters is that all of their items are approved for competition by multiple high-authority competitive federations, such as the USA Powerlifting (USAPL) and the International Powerlifting Federations (IPF).
Top Features of Inzer Belts
Inzer powerlifting belts are known as Inzer Forever. These belts are available in different closure mechanisms, sizes, and specifications.
The USA-made belts are known for being among the most durable lifting belts that you can find out there. They’re made of ultra-premium genuine leather that gives them an excellent level of durability and sturdiness.
The belts have a suede finish that prevents it from slipping and also adds a touch of aesthetics to the final product.
In addition to the genuine leather, the durability of these belts is on another level thanks to its high-density nylon stitching.
The belt is heavily stitched with 4 rows of lock-stitched nylon threads, which are extremely resistant to corrosion as well as wear and tear.
This stitching helps in securing the suede finish and genuine leather fillers, which ensures a super rugged belt that stands the test of time!
When it comes to options, Inzer Forever Belts are available in a wide variety of color options as well as sizes, closure mechanisms, thicknesses, and more.
For instance, Inzer Forever belts are available in both 10 mm and 13 mm thickness. Both of these thicknesses meet the specifications needed for competitive powerlifting by the IPF and are approved for competition by the federation. However, for most people who aren’t elite powerlifters, you should opt for the 10mm thickness.
Additionally, it comes in 5 sizes to suit different waist measurements, starting from X Small (22 – 25 inches) all the way up to 5 X Large (55 – 58 inches).
You can choose the colors of the belt from a number of color options and finishes. However, you won’t be able to customize your own design or add logos to it.
- Material: Genuine leather
- Thicknesses available: 10 mm and 13 mm
- Width: 4 inch (straight)
- Waist sizes available: from 22 inches to 58 inches
- Closure: lever and single prong
- Colors available: 24
- Customizability: none
- 4 rows of nylon lock stitching
- Lifetime warranty
- All belts are approved for competition by IPF
- Unrivaled level of durability and sturdiness
- Features a quick-release lever option
- Excellent value for its price
- Take a bit longer to break-in
- Doesn’t offer custom designs and adding logos
A Brief Review of Pioneer Weightlifting Belts
One of the popular competitors to Inzer Advance Technology is Pioneer Powerlifting. They also have their collection of powerlifting belts, so let’s have a look at them and see how they compare to Inzer belts.
About the Company
Pioneer lifting belts are made by General Leathercraft Manufacturing Inc. The Company was founded in Sidney, Nebraska in 1979. However, the Pioneer line of powerlifting belts has been around since 1987.
Currently, the manufacturer company resides in Coleman, Texas, and has been selling its Pioneer lifting belts directly to customers since 2013.
Top Features of Pioneer Belts
Pioneer belts are made of vegetable-tanned sole leather, which gives them a decent level of durability. However, they don’t have the same filler material that Inzer belts have, so they aren’t as durable as Inzer belts.
The belts are available in multiple thicknesses and width options, including 10 mm and 13 mm thickness as well as the 4-inch width.
Although these specifications meet the requirements for high-end belts, Pioneer belts are not approved for competition by the IPF and other federations, which is an important consideration if you’re a competitive powerlifter.
They also offer a similar lever buckle design. However, a lot of testers found that the levers are quite flimsy and unreliable.
Design-wise, the company offers a wide variety of options and colors that are vibrant and don’t fade with washing. While their color choices are a bit lacking, they make it up by offering custom made designs.
In other words, you’ll be able to add all your logos and design the belt as much as you like for a special price.
Similar to Inzer belts these belts are covered by a lifetime warranty. They also have highly responsive customer service agents that reply quickly.
- Material: Genuine leather
- Thicknesses available: 6.5, 8.5, 10, and 13 mm
- Width: 2.5, 3, and 4 inches (straight and tapered)
- Waist sizes available: from 22 inches to 52 inches
- Closure: Single prong and lever
- Colors available: 19
- Customizability: highly customizable
- Not approved for competitive powerlifting
- 2 rows of stitching
- Lifetime warranty
- Short break-in period
- Genuine leather construction
- Highly customizable with logos and designs
- Available in multiple sizes and thicknesses
- Can get a bit pricer than other options on the market
- Not approved for competitive powerlifting
- Not as durable as Inzer belts
Features to Consider While Comparing the Two Lifting Belts
Now that you had a quick look at the two lifting belts, it’s time to dive in deeper, discuss the juicy details of both belts, and give a final verdict about the winner for each of these aspects.
Inzer and Pioneer are good brands with various options to opt for. However, to call one a winner, there are some aspects and features that you should consider your final decision.
To make the comparison process easier for you, I’ll provide you with an in-depth look at what the two brands offer for each of these critical aspects.
Construction Materials and Durability
Both belts are made of 100% genuine leather. However, Inzer always offers a higher standard when it comes to construction.
The filler materials are more solid, so the belt lasts a lot longer. Inzer belts also have 4 rows of high-density nylon stitching for added durability and stability on the suede layer.
On the other hand, Pioneer belts are still tough, but never as much as the Inzer ones. They also usually have two rows of stitching to stabilize the outer suede layers and the inner hide.
Durability is a golden standard for a lifting belt, which makes it a clear win for Inzer belts. I’ve had mine for over 12 years now and it’s as sturdy as when I bought it.
Comfort & Break-In Period
Despite being a functional belt that you only wear while lifting, you still need to make sure that the belt is comfortable enough for you.
As a rule of thumb, all leather belts won’t be comfortable the first couple of weeks of wearing them.
However, with constant wearing, the belts start to break in and become more pliable and easier to deal with.
For the durable inzer belt, this step might take up to 3 or 4 weeks of usage vs a week or two in Pioneer belts’ case.
This short break-in period gives Pioneer a very slight and short lived advantage when you first use the belts. Since they’re practically less stiff, they’re a bit more comfortable to wear and require a shorter time to break in the leather.
Both brands offer single prong buckles and lever buckles as closure mechanisms. The choice between them depends on your preference between ease of release and adjustability.
For instance, if you frequently adjust your belt between sets, you should use prong buckles. Otherwise, lever buckles will give you an instant release of the belt, making it a lot straightforward to wear and take off after workouts.
Many companies on the market had their go at making lever buckles. However, a lot of them aren’t as reliable and durable as Inzer’s lever.
Although both Inzer and Pioneer make prongs and lever buckles, Inzer takes this one home for the extra durability of its metal buckles, especially for lever types.
If you need a lifting belt, it means that you’re most likely lifting a ton of weight already. In most cases, this means that you’re into competitive weightlifting or powerlifting.
To put it in the simplest way possible, if you’re into competitive lifting or might consider it in the future, you shouldn’t go for Pioneer’s belts.
Inzer’s belts being the only brand of the two that’s approved for competitive powerlifting by the IPF is a conclusive win by knockout for anyone that’s considering using the belt in a real competition.
Width & Style
The width and style of a belt are crucial for competitive powerlifting. An approved belt should always be 4 inches wide with a straight style.
Some tapered belts are too wide in the back, which makes them not approved for competition. You need to be careful if you're going the tapered route, so you can make sure it still fits the IPF regulations.
However, If you're not a competitive powerlifter it doesn't matter. Both belts offer 4-inch wide belts with Pioneer offering smaller widths that aren’t ideal for big lifters.
Mostly a tie between the two. On one hand, Inzer only offers the competition approved width (4-inch). On the other hand, Pioneer has multiple width options but all of which aren’t approved for competition, which is a deal breaker for a lot of lifters.
Inzer and Pioneer belts are among the elite few brands that trust in the quality of their product so much that they offer a lifetime warranty for them.
For a belt that potentially lasts a lifetime without issues, you might never need this perk. However, it’s always better to know that the manufacturer has got your back if accidents happen or you have a faulty product.
Another draw between both companies. Both of them offer a true lifetime worry-free warranty.
When it comes to price, both Pioneer and Inzer Forever belts are quite pricey. However, custom made belts from Pioneer can cost you a hefty some. Also, to match inzer’s quality, you might end up paying a bit more.
Inzer’s belts are built to last, made from premium materials, and approved for competitions. As a result, they sound like a better value for their price, making them the winner for this round.
A Quick Look at Inzer Belts Stand out Features
Here are some of the features that make Inzer belts head and shoulders above the competition when compared to the belts made by Pioneer Powerlifting.
Competition Approved Specifications
When it comes to competitive powerlifting, the IPF sets out strict rules for specifications and designs for the approved lifting belts.
For example, the maximum allowed belt thickness for the competition is 13 mm, and the minimum is 10 mm. The belts should also have a 4-inch width whether they’re designed with prongs or levers.
Not only that but they also release a list with all the approved brands for competitive powerlifting.
In this list, you’ll find Inzer belts listed, but you won’t find Pioneer’s ones. The latter also stated on their website’s FAQ that their belts aren’t competition-approved.
When it comes to durability, all products on the market will claim that they’re rugged and will last for long.
However, in my experience, the only lifting belt that stayed true to its promise on durability is the Inzer lifting belt.
While all belts are relatively durable, Inzer Forever is really on another level when it comes to longevity.
A Quick Look at Pioneer Belts Stand out Features
Pioneer belts not being my overall winner doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have some features and aspects that Inzer Forever belts lack. Let’s check these points out!
High Level of Customization
When it comes to options, Inzer covers a larger waist size range (from 22 inches to 58 inches), which is higher than the 52 inches that Pioneer belts cap out at. They also have more color options.
While Inzer offers a larger variety of preset colors, they don’t have an option for custom designs or specific colors outside their offered range.
On the other hand, as you know, Pioneer will allow you to change anything from leather color, and stitching color all the way to adding logos and embroidery to the belt. However, you should keep in mind that all these custom designs would cost you more money.
Short Break-in Period
Not only when compared to Inzer, but also when compared to most leather-made lifting belts out there. Pioneer belts take surprisingly less time to break in the leather.
This means that it will become pliable and easy to wear, adjust, and take off in much less time than Inzer belts.
However, once again, that’s an advantage that won’t last long. Once the Inzer belt is broken in, it’ll be as easy to wear and adjust.
Since you’re buying this belt to last for years, a couple of months’ advantage shouldn’t really be a concern.
To wrap things up, here’s my take on choosing between Inzer belts vs Pioneer belts. Both belts are US-made, durable, and have a lifetime warranty.
Ideally, I’d pick the Inzer belt as my overall winner due to its extremely premium quality build. I’ve been using it for over a decade now and it’s still going strong!
Here’s how it goes, use the Inzer Forever Belt if:
- You want a super durable lifting belt that will last you for years to come without replacements
- You’re a competitive powerlifter who’s looking for an IPF-approved lifting belt
- You specifically prefer the fast release feature and reliable lever buckles over single prongs
- You don’t mind it an extra week of leather breaking in for a remarkably ideal belt
However, you may want to go for the Pioneer belt in the following cases:
- You’re not planning to power lift competitively
- You want to heavily customize your belt with logos and others
- You don’t mind buying a new lifting belt every couple of years
If Pioneer belts fit the bill of what you’re seeking, click here to find out more about Pioneer Powerlifting belt options that you can go for.