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If you’re planning to get serious with lifting, you’re bound to need a powerlifting belt. It’s a must-have tool that helps you stabilize your spine, reduce lifting related back injuries, and utilize every inch of your power for the maximum gains.
The problem is, if you’re a big guy, you’ll need a lifting belt that’ll fit right. Ideally, I’d recommend the 13 mm Inzer Forever Belt (click for today’s price on Amazon) as the best lifting belt for big guys on the market. It’s extremely durable, and my Inzer Forever Belt lasted for over a decade and is still going strong.
Whether you’re looking for a good lifting belt for fat guys, or you’re looking for a belt that offers more spinal support than the average one, I’ll break down each of the options for you.
Here’s all the information you need before picking the ideal lifting belt for your body. Let’s dive in!
Top 5 Lifting Belts for Lifters with Bigger Builds Available on the Market
For a guy with a bigger belly or a larger build in general, extra support and spinal stabilization are needed while lifting. For that reason, they need special belts with added thickness.
To help you pick the best option for your needs, here are some of the top lifting belts that are suitable for big guys.
The top 5 lifting belts for big guys are:
• 13 mm Inzer Forever Lever Belt – Best Overall Lifting Belt For Big Guys
• 13 mm Rogue Powerlifting Belt – Best Single Prong Style
• RDX Powerlifting Belt – Best Double Prong Style
• 10 mm Rogue Echo Belt – Best Budget Belt For Big Guys
• Schiek 3004 Nylon Lifting Belt – Best Nylon Belt For Big Guys
Starting the list with one of my all-time favorite lifting belts, the Inzer Forever Lever Belt. When I reviewed the best belts for powerlifting, you’d find me recommending the 10 mm version of that Inzer lever lifting belt.
However, for bigger guys, you’ll need extra support at the back to handle your body, which is why the 13 mm version should be a better option for you.
Inzer belts are made of top quality genuine leather, which gives it an extreme level of durability and helps it last for decades without replacement.
However, leather makes the belt a bit stiff and needs time to break in. since the belt here is thicker, this problem would be even more noticeable.
When the belt first arrives, it’ll need extra time before it’s pliable and feels comfortable to wear, about a couple of months should be enough for it to become a perfect fit.
The leather is also topped from both sides with exceptional quality suede layers for an aesthetic finish and prevents slipping out of position. Additionally, the belt rocks one of the best lever buckles on the market with remarkable reliability and lifetime warranty.
The stitching on the belt is also unrivaled. It features 4 rows of nylon thread stitching, which is higher in quality than the industry’s average.
Finally, the Inzer belt is available in a wide variety of sizes to suit measurements from 22 to 58 inches.
- Outstanding level of durability and support
- Comes with a lifetime warranty for a worry-free purchase
- Allows quick release with its ultra-durable lever closure
- Takes a bit longer to break in when compared to other belts
If you do a lot of adjustments to your belt while performing different exercises, you’ll need the kind of belt closure that supports that.
While lever buckles make it a whole lot easier to wear and take off your powerlifting belt, it has the problem of being a bit difficult to adjust while wearing it.
For guys with a significantly large stomach, they might find it better to opt for a buckle closure, especially a single prong.
Prong buckles are much easier to adjust between sets. However, they take a bit longer to put on and off. Keep in mind that if you don’t think that unless you’ll need to adjust the belt, you should still take the lever belt over this one.
In terms of durability, this belt is made of American vegetable-tanned leather, which makes it super durable.
It also has a similar suede lining on the interior part of the belt, which helps it stay stable while wearing.
Similar to the Inzer belt, this one is 13 mm thick, allowing it to give you the ideal amount of support while lifting heavyweights. The belt is available in various sizes but unfortunately, it lacks the variety of color options.
- Excellent for those who adjust the belt frequently
- The ideal thickness for guys with a big stomach
- Quite durable and sturdy leather construction
- Only available in black
For some people, picking the prong style over the lever style is a matter of preference. If you don’t have a big stomach, wearing a double prong for added security won’t be a problem for you.
It’ll also give you all the perks of being able to adjust the belt on the go. However, if you have a large belly, wearing the double prong defeats the purpose of being easy, so you’d need to go for the single prong.
The RDX powerlifting belt is a highly versatile belt and a remarkably affordable belt. It has a unique classic appearance thanks to its oil-tanned Nubuck leather. This type of leather is quite soft but also durable and handles the weight nicely.
While most belts on the market are single stitched, this one has double stitching on both edges for an even better sturdiness profile.
What makes this belt special is that, in addition to powerlifting, this belt goes well with general weightlifting and Strongman. The belt is competition approved for some powerlifting federations, but not all of them.
Keep in mind that this belt is 10 mm thick, which is good enough for bigger guys that don’t have a large stomach.
- Has dual stitching for added durability
- Made from soft but durable Nubuck leather
- Can be used for other activities like Strongman and general weightlifting
- Not approved for competitive powerlifting in all federations
If you’re on a budget and looking for a decent belt that suits your body, the Rogue Echo is your way to go.
A lot of people who are looking for an inexpensive belt go for the Dark Iron Lifting Belt as their “budget belt”. However, I wouldn’t recommend that option for a big guy that needs more support.
The Dark Iron Lifting Belt is not only known for dye-staining your clothes when you sweat, but it’s also really flimsy (read my full review of the Dark Iron Lifting Belt).
On the other hand, the Rogue Echo is within a similar price range, much more durable, and stabilizes your back better even though it’s only 10 mm thick! All that thanks to Rogue’s vegetable-tanned leather and the double stitch fortification.
Not only that, but the Rogue Echo is also approved by the International Powerlifting Federation (IPF) for competitive powerlifting!
The belt is also available in a wide variety of sizes to accommodate different waist measurements.
- The ideal choice for buyers on a budget
- Remarkably more durable than other budget-friendly options on the market
- Approved for competitive powerlifting
- Not 13 mm thick, so isn’t suitable for a guy who needs massive support while lifting
Lastly, nylon belts aren’t usually my thing and I wouldn’t normally recommend it as a material for lifters with bigger builds.
Although Nylon is pretty rugged and handles the wear and tear nicely, it’s not an ideal material when it comes to supporting your back because it’s not tough enough.
But that also comes with a perk! If a belt isn’t too rigid, it won’t take long months to break in like leather belts.
Also, it’ll be a lot easier to move around, put on, and take off, since it has a velcro closure that works almost instantly.
It also has a Slide n’ Grip style closure, which is a one direction hook for quick tightening for security and minor support.
Another thing that makes the Schiek 3004 Nylon Lifting belt special is that it has a conical shape that contours to your body’s shape for supporting the abdominal area and the lower back. I cover more about the design in my Schiek Lifting Belt Review.
So if you’re not planning to do extremely heavy bench presses, squats, or deadlifts with the belt, and you just want a belt that gives you minor support while doing less compounded exercises, it’s a pretty good option to consider!
- An excellent choice for those who are looking for minor support
- Instant fastening with the Slide n’ Grip closure
- Doesn’t have any break-in time
- Not ideal for serious lifters who need lift heavy
What Features Do Bigger Guys Need In a Weight Lifting Belt?
For a lifter with an average build, they can choose between various aspects to suit their body measurements.
However, if you’re a big guy, you’ll have to go for a specific set of specifications to make the most out of your belt. In the following section, I’ll walk you through those points.
The thickness of the belt is one of the crucial factors to consider if you have a large build. As a rule of thumb, a minimum of 10 mm thickness is necessary for having enough support to lift.
However, the ideal thickness is usually 13 mm. The extra thickness will add more rigidity and support to keep your spine from compression.
The materials of the belts affect their performance significantly and choosing the ideal ones for you are critical for your lifting style.
If you’re looking for massive support while lifting a ton of weight, you’ll need a leather belt. They’re not only rigid, but they’re also extremely durable and will last for a long time.
You may also find nylon belts, which aren’t ideal for supporting your back if you’re lifting a lot of weights.
Nylon is a pretty tough synthetic material that usually uses velcro closure instead of the regular forms of lever or prong closures in the leather ones.
They’re only good for someone who won’t lift heavy or planning to do compounded exercises like squats and deadlifts.
The velcro closure on these nylon belts makes it a lot easier to put the belts on and off. Despite all that, for a big guy, a leather belt is always a superior option to consider.
When it comes to width, you need the belt to be no less than 4 inches wide all the way around the belt.
Keep in mind that belts that are too wide or too thin at the back won’t be allowed competitively. For that reason, I prefer that you keep the belt straight all the way.
Not only will it ensure tight support around your lower back, but you’ll stay on the safe side if you’re planning to lift competitively.
An important thing to understand is that bigger guys need to wear their belts lower on the torso. I cover this in further detail in my article on Deadlift Belt Position.
Most belts come with either lever closure or prong buckle closure. Each one of these styles has its own set of pros and cons.
To me, lever closure is the ideal buckle for your lifting belt. It makes the annoying process of putting the belt on a lot easier.
Not only that, but they have a quick-release option that allows for immediate relief of the tight belt once you’re done.
The only drawback of lever buckles is that they’re pretty difficult to adjust between sets. That’s why they’re ideal for those who wear the belt with the same tightness for all lifts.
For bigger guys, sometimes they prefer a tighter setting for squats but a looser setting for deadlifts because it feels uncomfortable bending over with a belt to set up a deadlift when you have a bigger stomach.
The prong style allows you to adjust the setting easily. If they don’t want to use different settings, then the lever should stay your way to go.
Usually, lifters can easily get the buckle on one prong, but getting it on the second prong is a bit harder if you’re cranking the belt really tight.
It also depends on how big your stomach is. So, if you have a large belly and you like to wear the belt really tight, then I would opt for the single prong style, such as the Rogue Powerlifting Belt.
However, if you don’t have too big of a stomach, and you like to wear the belt a bit looser than the double prong will feel more secure and it won’t be a hassle to fasten.
Benefits of Wearing A Lifting Belt For Bigger Guys
Wearing a lifting belt packs a bunch of benefits for all body types. But it’s exceptionally beneficial for big guys. Here’s why!
Ideal Stabilization While Lifting
Wearing a rigid belt while lifting helps you brace your abdomen from the back and the core. This is even proven in tons of studies.
For example, this study shows that, by wearing a weightlifting belt, you’ll enhance the intra-abdominal pressure and reduce spinal stress.
Additionally, when you’re doing deadlifts, you need to hold your breath to keep your core stable. Wearing a belt makes it much easier to strengthen the core, making it much easier to breathe properly while lifting.
Reduce Weight Induced Back Pain
For people with a regular build, weight induced fatigue, and build-up due to lifting are significant problems that can even cause injuries. If you have a big guy, that means even more weight induced fatigue!
According to a study, using a rigid lifting belt helps in removing some of the back stress and the load on your spine.
The result of the study showed that the subjects of the study reported feeling more comfortable upon lifting with the belts on.
Puts Your Mind in the Zone
A huge chunk of the success of your lift is in your mindset. The brace and hold breathing technique and wearing the belt puts your mind “in the zone” and gives you a push of confidence and better muscle imagery while lifting, which helps your body push out the best it can offer!
How To Wear a Belt If You Are A Bigger Guy
To wear the lifting belt correctly, you’ll first need to find the ideal spot on your abdomen to wrap the belt around so you can move freely without it wiggling around.
For squats and deadlifts, that should usually be around the middle of your abdomen or a bit off-center depending on your body measurements.
You usually start by placing the belt around your back and pull the end of the belt towards the buckle.
To adjust the tightness to the ideal level, you should suck your stomach in all the way and fasten the belt.
Make sure that you test out the belt’s tightness by performing weightless squats and see if it’s comfortable enough for you.
Good lifting belts for big guys are all about being thicker, offering better support, and allowing the wearer to adjust it comfortably if they need different settings for different exercises.
With that said, I pick the 13mm Inzer Forever Lever Belt as the best overall lifting belt for anyone with a bigger build.
They might be a bit pricier than some options out there, but they’re well worth the price if you put their unrivaled durability in mind. You won’t have to replace it every couple of years and it comes with a lifetime warranty to add more security to your purchase.
However, if you’re on a budget, or you don’t need massive support for your relatively casual exercises, I think that 10mm Rogue Echo Belt would do the trick for you.
It’s a much better budget-friendly option that still packs decent durability and quality materials for optimal support while lifting.