Both weightlifting belts and wrist straps are commonly used weightlifting training aids but their effects on deadlift kinematics and performance were still not known. This study examined the effects of weightlifting belts and wrist straps on the kinematics of the deadlift exercise, time to complete a deadlift and rating of perceived exertion (RPE) in male recreational weightlifters.
This study used a repeated-measures, within-subjects design. Twenty male healthy recreational weightlifters (mean age ± standard deviation = 23.1 ± 2.5 years) were recruited from 2 local gyms and the Education University of Hong Kong between January and April 2021. All participants used various combinations of belt and straps during a conventional deadlift. The hip and knee flexion, cervical lordosis, thoracic kyphosis and lumbar lordosis angles and time to complete a deadlift were measured using video analysis software. RPE was also recorded.
Wearing both a belt and wrist straps was found to reduce knee flexion angle (P < .001), but not hip flexion angle (P > .05), during the setup phase of the deadlift compared to wearing no aid. Wearing straps alone exaggerated thoracic kyphosis in the lockout phase of the deadlift compared to wearing a belt alone (P < .001). No changes were seen in cervical and lumbar lordosis angles when using any or both of the weightlifting aids. Additionally, the participants completed deadlifts faster when wearing both a belt and straps (P = .008) and perceived less exertion when wearing a belt and/or straps (P < .001).
Weightlifting belts and wrist straps, when using together, have positive effects on the kinematics of deadlift, time to complete a deadlift and RPE in male recreational weightlifters. Trainers should recommend the use of a belt and straps together, but not straps alone, to recreational weightlifters when performing deadlift training.
Scopus Subject Areas
- equipment and supplies and biomechanical phenomena