Every weightlifter knows that proper form and technique will help them prevent injury. They know that using the proper equipment will help keep them safer and have a cleaner workout. But what many people do not understand is why some of the safety equipment is necessary. They do not seem to think that weightlifting belts are just as important to their workout as proper shoes are to a runner. Nobody would think about running without shoes, so nobody should even think about weightlifting without a good belt.
Now the belts are not really belts that hold up one’s pants. But they wrap around the stomach section of anybody that is lifting weights. These belts provide pressure on the stomach muscles and when the person working out is straining to lift, the belts push on the stomach, keeping the muscles from ripping and tearing and causing a hernia. This is not something that the lifter can do by simply concentrating on tightening the stomach muscles. While other muscles are being strained, the stomach muscles can actually tear apart allowing the intestines to poke through the abdomen. The recovery is a long and painful process, and can set anyone back months in the workout routine.
So in order to prevent injury and an unwanted break from working out, a good leather lifting belt is a necessity. While other materials are used when making these belts, the leather belts are heavy enough and provide the amount of support needed. A synthetic belt will not provide support as adequately as necessary. A lighter belt could flex with the muscles and still cause pain and injury.
Since nobody would think about running without good shoes, why does anyone think about lifting without a belt? They simply do not know any better. Many gyms will provide belts to use or the weightlifter can purchase his or her own. The important thing is to actually use the belt.