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  1. #1
    Registered User sribond's Avatar
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    Is Belt Squat machine worthit?

    Location: Toronto/Canada
    Assuming budget & space are no constraints, should I invest in a Belt Squat machine?
    Need some expert's opinion here if it is better than traditional Squat or SSB? I mean do we get all benefits with this Belt squat as in SSB?
    If so, pls recommend me the best (also cheapest in Canada.
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  2. #2
    Neutral Good murphyreedus's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by sribond View Post
    Location: Toronto/Canada
    Assuming budget & space are no constraints, should I invest in a Belt Squat machine?
    Yes


    Need some expert's opinion here if it is better than traditional Squat or SSB? I mean do we get all benefits with this Belt squat as in SSB?
    Non-expert opinion: No, the belt squat does not have all the benefits of an SSB. There is a good deal of overlap and it does have some benefits that the SSB/regular bar does not have, like taking compressive force off of the spine. Which one is "better" completely depends on your goals and existing conditions. If neither is ruled out, why not both?

    If so, pls recommend me the best (also cheapest in Canada.

    Is budget a constraint, or not?
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  3. #3
    Registered User sribond's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by murphyreedus View Post
    Yes




    Non-expert opinion: No, the belt squat does not have all the benefits of an SSB. There is a good deal of overlap and it does have some benefits that the SSB/regular bar does not have, like taking compressive force off of the spine. Which one is "better" completely depends on your goals and existing conditions. If neither is ruled out, why not both?




    Is budget a constraint, or not?
    preferably under $1000 (CAD) or even lesser. I can wait for good deals if any and no rush as currently i am managing with a SSB
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  4. #4
    Common sense/moderation. gbullock32's Avatar
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    Wouldn't say it's better but having used one before it took a lot of strain off of my back which is nice given my back is fcked up; what's the reason for wanting one?
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  5. #5
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    Originally Posted by sribond View Post
    Location: Toronto/Canada
    Assuming budget & space are no constraints, should I invest in a Belt Squat machine?
    Need some expert's opinion here if it is better than traditional Squat or SSB? I mean do we get all benefits with this Belt squat as in SSB?
    If so, pls recommend me the best (also cheapest in Canada.
    Belt Squats

    This method allows you to completely overload the legs by taking the lower back out of the equation.

    The limiting factor in a Squat and a Safety Bar Squat is the lower back gives out before the legs.

    With that said, the Safety Bar does allow you to hold on to the rack and assist the lower back, once it fatigues; which allows some overloading on the the legs.

    As nurohgyreedus notes regarding Belt Squats, they take "compressive force off of the spine."

    Belt Squat are part of my program due to compression forces and because they allow me to focus on my weak point, my legs.

    Secondly, they allow my lower back to recover from heavy Good Mornings; which is part of my Deadlift Training.

    As per murphyreedus, "Which one is "better" completely depends on your goals and existing conditions."

    For me it's Belt Squats.

    Home Made Belt Squat

    I have a great Home Made Box Squat the I made for just over $300.00.

    Here Is What You Need for Belt Squats

    1) Two Sturdy Boxes to stand on; you want something solid.

    One of my lifting buddies made me a couple of wooden Plyometric Boxes that work.

    2) 'Spud Belt Squat Belt
    https://www.liftinglarge.com/search....elt+squat+belt

    I have the Women's Belt. It has a shorter length, which means the boxes you stand on don't need to be so high.

    3) Loading Pin
    https://www.ironmind-store.com/15-Ol...ctinfo/1314-c/

    I have the IronMind 15 inch Loading Pin.

    4) Chain

    To hook the Belt Squat Belt up to the Loading Pin.

    5) Heavy Duty Carabiners

    ...to attached the Belt to the Pin.

    I have loaded my Loading Pin Up with over 500 lbs and performed Partial Quarter Belt Squat.

    Assisted Belt Squats

    I place the Boxes up by the Power Rack and hold on to it when performing Belt Squats.

    It allow me to pull up in the bottom position of the Belt Squat with heavy loads.

    As I drive the weight higher, I stop pulling up on the rack, allowing my legs to take on more of the load.

    Thus, this method allows for...

    Accommodating Resistance Training

    This type of training attaches Band and/or Chain to a Bar for Squats, Bench Press, etc.

    Doing so, allows the muscle to be overload through a greater range of the movement.

    As you ascend in a Squat, the load is increased in the top part of the movement, where you are the strongest.

    Kenny Croxdale
    Last edited by kennycroxdale; 11-23-2021 at 07:30 AM.
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  6. #6
    Registered User ncsuLuke's Avatar
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    I don't think a belt squat is worth it. I got rid of mine because it collected dust after a while. If you don't have an injury preventing you from loading your spine I'd rather just do squat variations and have a leg extension/leg curl as a secondary piece of equipment.
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  7. #7
    Registered User sera310's Avatar
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    I have a SSB and, like Kennycroxdale, a homemade belt squat apparatus. Thoughts: I have the SSB because I have tight, achy shoulders and no longer do well cranking my shoulders back to squat with a straight bar (I'm 62, with lots of old injuries). The SSB is great for that.

    But it still loads the spine, which is sometimes what you want, sometimes not what you want.

    So I made a belt squat out of an extra frame member for my rack that I use to mount the low pulley for my homemade cable & pulley system, + a pin that bolts to the rack to hold plates that I mount to the frame member with a pop pin, + a band peg to hold the frame member in place on the rack, + a Spud belt, + a dirt bike soft tie to clip the belt to the frame member. I set it on a dirt bike lift stand so I'm not having to lift it up from the bottom of the movement. It's way simpler to use than this description makes it sound, and the cost was low (especially since I already had the frame member). It works great for when I want to pound my legs but not pound my back. I find myself using it way more than the SSB now, for that reason.

    If you end up needing a belt, the Spud squat belt is the way to go. You will see reviewers who say that a dip belt works just fine, but it didn't work for me.
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  8. #8
    Registered User cwcmac's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ncsuLuke View Post
    I don't think a belt squat is worth it. I got rid of mine because it collected dust after a while. If you don't have an injury preventing you from loading your spine I'd rather just do squat variations and have a leg extension/leg curl as a secondary piece of equipment.
    I like being able to close with heavy belt squats. Probably also more important for a 47 year old as opposed to a 35 year old. Still continuing to move up numbers with squats but I like it to close out.

    Probably more personal preference and variety more than anything.
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  9. #9
    Registered User ncsuLuke's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by cwcmac View Post
    I like being able to close with heavy belt squats. Probably also more important for a 47 year old as opposed to a 35 year old. Still continuing to move up numbers with squats but I like it to close out.

    Probably more personal preference and variety more than anything.
    Oh yeah, totally a personal preference thing. I can see the value in them for sure but for my space and needs I'd rather have something else. I'd probably like a Rhino or lever belt squat better than the Squatmax too, I just got tired of how annoying it was to load/unload the weight on that thing. If I was going to dedicate the space to that though, I'd really like the Prime leg extension/curl combo, my problem is I'm out of room. Probably the best for my wallet.
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  10. #10
    Registered User cwcmac's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ncsuLuke View Post
    Oh yeah, totally a personal preference thing. I can see the value in them for sure but for my space and needs I'd rather have something else. I'd probably like a Rhino or lever belt squat better than the Squatmax too, I just got tired of how annoying it was to load/unload the weight on that thing. If I was going to dedicate the space to that though, I'd really like the Prime leg extension/curl combo, my problem is I'm out of room. Probably the best for my wallet.
    Agreed and I wasn't considering the space issue since I have Mech's rack mount one that folds up nicely and takes 0 additional space. No way could I justify a full size one unless I had 5 times the space I have now.
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  11. #11
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    From the perspective of another Mech belt squat owner with a space saving design in mind, I find it useful for some variation, high volume squat work and a break from traditional back squats.

    My only gripe with the rack mounted version is that it's kind of a chore switching plates over to it and maneuvering around other equipment inside the rack (add more issue if you got two bars set up in the rack on each side and depending on the exercise order of what's set forth in front of you during your lifting routine)...other than that though, I find it to be a useful piece that hits the legs hard.
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  12. #12
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    Originally Posted by ncsuLuke View Post
    I'd probably like a Rhino or lever belt squat better than the Squatmax too, I just got tired of how annoying it was to load/unload the weight on that thing.
    To me, top loading is the fatal flaw of the Squatmax, even though everyone agrees that it is the most pure vertical movement. In fact, any top loading equipment is a non-starter for me.
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    Originally Posted by splitsquat View Post
    To me, top loading is the fatal flaw of the Squatmax, even though everyone agrees that it is the most pure vertical movement. In fact, any top loading equipment is a non-starter for me.
    I have a Rhino and I like it a lot. A bit of a pain to load with issues like DVO said. Typical issues when dealing with space on home gyms. I have it next to a Freemotion bicep machine that can rotate the seat/preacher pad which gives me a path (sorry for the sideways pic.can’t figure out how to rotate)

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    Originally Posted by sribond View Post
    Location: Toronto/Canada
    Assuming budget & space are no constraints, should I invest in a Belt Squat machine?
    Need some expert's opinion here if it is better than traditional Squat or SSB? I mean do we get all benefits with this Belt squat as in SSB?
    If so, pls recommend me the best (also cheapest in Canada.
    It's an assistance compound leg exercise. It does not replace the back squat or SSB. If you can't load your spine at all...yeah sure but that's a major major issue and I'd be happy just to be training and functional in life.

    I have barbell, SSB, and a LE/LC machine. I use my belt squat for additional compound press leg volume and it has decent carryover. After you full squat or deadlift, you don't have a lot of juice left and this is a lot less strenuous. I used it after back squats this AM. Let's me get some more volume in a less taxing manner.

    I like it a lot for my needs BUT from your writing I'm not confident you are looking at one for correct reasons. As a substitute for a remotely intact body - there are none.
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    As C123 says- Belt squat is a plus to have dealing with issues loading the spine. But also good to have if dealing with any major shoulder issues like torn rotator cuffs or just times where the shoulders need a break.
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    Originally Posted by sribond View Post
    Location: Toronto/Canada
    Assuming budget & space are no constraints, should I invest in a Belt Squat machine?
    Need some expert's opinion here if it is better than traditional Squat or SSB? I mean do we get all benefits with this Belt squat as in SSB?
    If so, pls recommend me the best (also cheapest in Canada.
    If you want to try the movement to see if you'd like it, just get a heavy kettle bell or dumbbell & do some goblet squats.
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