What is a Weighted Vest and How Does it Work for Fitness?

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What is a Weighted Vest and How Does it Work for Fitness?

Getting bored of your regular workouts? Are you looking for ways to add more challenge and resistance to your everyday gym routine?

If you nodded yes to even one of the above questions, let us introduce you to WEIGHTED VESTS. One of the best and the most convenient gym gears will add all the challenge and resistance you need to enhance your everyday boring workouts.

Weighted vests are thoughtfully curated gym gear with multiple pockets and fixed and removable weights, allowing you to increase or decrease the weights as per your fitness levels.

Weighted Vest

This multi-functional gym workout tool improves your strength, endurance, and cardiovascular...

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When you exercise using a weighted vest, it creates tension and resistance for the muscles when performing cardio, muscle building, or body-weight exercises, helping you maximize your workout results.

Read the article ahead to learn about the benefits offered by the weighted vest and the upper and lower body workouts you can do to build strong muscles in no time.

A weighted vest is exactly what its name states; a vest with weights attached. Wearing it may seem to be an easy task, but it's anything but easy. Once you wear the weighted vest during your workouts, the pressure and added weights to your upper body make your chest a little tighter than you are comfortable with.

Even though the vest adds pressure to the upper body, it's still easier for some people to workout. The weights are attached to the chest, making it comparatively easier to lift and workout in.

Moreover, the vest is an ideal gym gear because it helps engage all the body muscles together. Whether you're performing an upper body workout or lower body workout, the vest forces your body to engage all the muscles to maintain balance and workout efficiently. 

Let's discuss some significant benefits a weighted vest offers in more detail. 

Benefits of Weighted Vest Workouts

Wearing a weighted vest during your workout is not just about getting bigger muscles or adding more strength, but it also offers a host of other benefits that makes it the must-have gym gear.

Enhances Weight Loss

The best strategy is to add more resistance to your workouts when trying to lose weight.  Wearing a weighted vest while performing aerobic exercises intensifies the exercise and adds resistance, enhancing the weight loss journey.

The more weight you'll be lifting, the greater the energy consumption by your body, and the faster you'll burn off excess calories.

Improves Bone and Muscular Health

One of the ultimate benefits that resistance training offers you is improved bone and muscle health. When you lift heavy weights, the bones increase their density to handle the increased pressure. This increased bone density leads to developing connective tissues and a firm and powerful bone structure.

Having a sturdy skeleton not only allows you to lift heavier weights and burn off extra calories but protects your bones from getting injured or fractured during training sessions as well.

Aids Cardiovascular Health

A significant benefit has been noticed by various studies about the improved performance in athletes who practiced with a weighted vest. According to research, weighted vests used by athletes during training resulted in increased blood lactate threshold, allowing them to run faster for longer durations without tiring quickly.

Furthermore, training with a weighted vest makes your heart and lungs work more profusely, resulting in an increased ability to consume oxygen.

Enhances Core Strength

Our stabilizer muscles are majorly involved in performing explosive body workouts such as power cleans and strength-based exercises like push-ups and planks. If you feel you are not challenging your muscles enough and want to enhance their performance, adding a weighted vest is the way to go.

Adding a weighted vest in workouts like push-ups and planks has shown that the stabilizer muscles get heavily involved and increase an individual's muscular strength.

Lower-Body Weighted Vest Workout

Lower body weight training is essential for building strong muscles and increasing physical activity levels. Here are some simple exercises that can be done at home or in a community gym using a weighted vest to give your workout some extra burn.

Single Leg Explosive Deadlift + Lunge

  • Standing straight with feet open hip-width apart, place your hands by your sides.
  • Keep your left foot at the back and bend over until you are standing on your right foot and touching the floor with your fingertips.
  • Keep your neck, back, and left leg aligned.
  • Return your left leg on the floor, and lunge forward by keeping your left leg in front and making a 90-degree angle between your thigh and the floor
  • Get back up from the lunge and bend over again to perform the single-leg deadlift.
  • Perform 5 reps per side

Lateral Lunge + Lateral Kick

  • Stand with your feet together and hands in front of you
  • Open your right leg far out on your right side and bend your right knee while keeping the left leg fully extended and pinned on the spot
  • Return your right leg and stand straight
  • As soon as your leg returns to the original spot, kick with your right leg sideways, as high as you can
  • This completes one rep. Perform 10 reps on each side

Jump Squat

  • Stand with feet shoulder-width apart
  • Bend your knees and lower yourself to the floor until your thighs are parallel to the floor
  • Engaging the quads, glutes, and hamstrings pull the body upwards and jump as high as you can
  • Return to the floor in a squat position and continue with the rhythm
  • Perform 15 reps

Pop Jacks

  • Get down on the floor in a push-up position, with your hands open shoulder-width apart, ensuring your hands are fully extended, and your elbow is not bent
  • Fully stretch your legs behind and hold your body on your toes
  • Bring your legs forward near your hands at the same time with a jump
  • Lift your hands off of the floor and sit on your feet
  • Continue the rhythm by putting your hands back on the floor and jumping back your feet, fully extending them like before
  • Perform 10 reps to complete the workout

Jump Lunge

  • Stand with your feet open shoulder-width apart and hands by your sides
  • Bring your right foot ahead and bend your knees, making a 90-degree angle between your right thigh and the floor
  • Return your right foot and bring your left foot in front simultaneously, making a jump
  • When you land after the jump, your left leg should be in the front, and you must bend down, making a 90-degree angle between your left thigh and the floor
  • Keep jumping and alternating the legs and perform 10 jumping lunges per leg

Upper-Body Weighted Vest Workout

Use a weighted vest to challenge your upper body. There are targeted strength movements that you can use to sculpt and define your deltoids, biceps, triceps, pecs, and other muscles while adding definition to your core.

Overhand Pull-up

  • Stand under a pull-up bar and hold with a solid overhand grip, keeping your hands shoulder-width apart.
  • Hang on the bar with hands completely extended and fold your legs behind to avoid touching the floor
  • Bend your elbows, keep your core engaged and shoulders back, and pull your body upwards.
  • Slowly lower yourself down into the original position, and
  • Repeat for the next 12 reps
Pull Up Bar Doorways

Gone are the days when you had to make do with old household equipment for your workout. Int...

Mountain Climbers

  • Get down on your all fours with your weight evenly distributed between your toes and hands.
  • Keep your hands shoulder-width apart and directly under your shoulders; your back flat and core engaged while aligning your neck with your back
  • Start the workout by pulling your right knee to the chest and returning to the original position
  • Bring your left knee forward as soon as the right leg returns to its original position
  • Keep alternating the feet for setting a rhythm without dropping your hips and continuing for 20 reps

High Knees

  • Stand straight with your feet hip-width apart and your arms at your sides
  • Begin by bringing your right knee towards your chest, slightly above waist level
  • As soon as the right foot touches the floor, bring up your left knee to your chest
  • This exercise is done as if jogging on the spot, bringing your knees as high as you can
  • Continue the workout for 30 seconds

Triceps Dips

  • Adjust the bars to your shoulder width if they are adjustable, and hold the dip bars with an inward grip
  • Jump off the ground to shift your weight on the bars
  • Keeping your body as straight as possible, hang your legs down in the air
  • Facing forward, lower yourself till your elbows are parallel to the floor and aligned with your shoulders
  • Raise your body back up without locking your elbows
  • Repeat for 12 reps.

Plank With Shoulder Taps

  • Get down on your all fours and extend your legs backward, balancing your body weight on the toes.
  • Make sure your elbows are placed directly under your shoulders.
  • Once you are comfortable in the position, start tapping alternate shoulders one by one; tap your right shoulder with the left hand and vice versa.
  • Continue the workout for 20 seconds

The Bottom Line

This easy-to-use and straightforward gym gear not only helps you challenge your muscles and your strength but helps you build bone density, boosts your fat loss journey, and helps you enhance cardiovascular health.

Furthermore, it makes your boring gym routine a lot more fun by adding various new workout variations and helps you break your muscular and weight loss plateaus effectively and efficiently.

Reading List

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Sweat It Out With These 17 Cardio Exercises

The Ultimate Guide to Training for Beginners

Article Sources

  • Macadam, Paul, et al. “Acute and Longitudinal Effects of Weighted Vest Training on Sprint-Running Performance: A Systematic Review.” Sports Biomechanics, May 2019, pp. 1–16. PubMed, https://doi.org/10.1080/14763141.2019.1607542
  • Tillaar, Roland van den. “Comparison of Kinematics and Muscle Activation between Push-up and Bench Press.” Sports Medicine International Open, vol. 3, no. 3, Sept. 2019, pp. E74–81. PubMed Central, https://doi.org/10.1055/a-1001-2526

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