Weight Vest Exercises Drills And Workouts

You've bought your weighted vest, but what now? What do you actually do with it? Depending on your goals, whether it's weight loss or to gain strength, you're still looking at the same exercises and workouts actually. By adding a weighted vest to the mixture your body will burn more calories and get rid of that unwanted fat, while at the same time gaining more power and muscles. Down below you'll find some exercises that will help you with your training, they will both burn fat and make you explosive and powerful.

Before you get started working out, remember to warm up thoroughly. All that added weight will put more pressure on your body, so make sure you're properly warmed up! Do some light cardio before putting the vest on, either by doing a quick jog or a couple of minutes on the jumping rope. As to how many reps you should do, we recommend that you stay in the 8-12 rep range.

Also, you should be able to complete your normal workout without the vest on. You should only have the weight vest on when your normal workout routine is too easy for you.

Weighted Lunges

The lunge is a classic exercise that is pretty challenging even without a weighted vest. To perform the movement you simply take a big step forward and squat down until your back knee touches the floor. When performing the weighted lunge it's important to not overextend your front knee, it should never pass your front toe. Keeping your back straight is important, especially when the vest is on, a slouched back could cause injuries.

You could do the lunge either by walking forward a few yards then doing the same thing back, or you could stand in the same place alternating legs. It doesn't matter which exercise you do, both will be great for fat loss and to build muscle.

The main muscle groups targeted by weighted lunges are the back muscles, abs, calves, hamstrings and your glutes.

Weighted Squats

To perform the weighted squat, stand a little wider than your shoulders. Bring your arms in front of you and while keeping a straight back, squat down til your knees are at a 90 degree angle. It's important that you keep your feet flat on the ground, you shouldn't be putting too much weight on your toes or on your heels. Weighted squats will target your butt and hamstrings mostly. Try to keep your form as strict as possible, it's better to do fewer reps with perfect form rather than pushing out a lot with poor form.

Weighted Box Jumps

A box jump is a plyometric exercise that is great for building explosive leg strength and shred fat. The platform you're jumping onto shouldn't be lower than two feet. There are two variations of this exercise, the speed jumps or squat box jumps. With speed jumps you're supposed to jump up the box and down again as quick as possible. This is great for your cardio and will give your body a real workout. If you prefer to build muscles and more power, the squat box jumps are much better. Here you'll jump onto the box, but instead of jumping down directly you will do a squat and then jump down.

Weighted Push Ups

Another classic exercise, the pushup on its own isn't that impressive, but with some added weight it can be quite challenging. The push up can be performed with plenty of variations, having your arms closer to the body will target the triceps and arms more. If you have a wider stance your will train your chest more. Please remember that you should be able to do at least ten pushups without a vest on, don't do weighted push ups on your knees. If you're lacking creativity when it comes to push ups, men's fitness has a great article about it.

Weighted Sprints

The last and final exercise drill is the weighted sprint, it's great for weight loss and building power and speed. Don't forget to check our article about weighted vests for running as well. While some people will recommend you to do a certain amount of time, it's better to push it as far as you can. Doing a sprint for a full minute is hard, let alone with heavy weight vest on. If you have access to a running track it's even better. Dedicate one area of the track to the sprint and jog the rest. That way you will be able to mix high intensity with low intensity training, it's the ultimate workout for your body. The weighted sprint will target all of your leg muscles.

Time to get shredded!

As you probably noticed, all of these exercise drills and workouts are you regular body weight drills. There are literally hundreds of different exercises you could do, but these are some of our favorites, they're great for weight loss and muscle growth. Let us know in the comments down below which exercise you love the most!

Weighted Vest For Autism – Benefits & Information

weighted vest for autism

If you have a relative, either an adult or a child, that has autism or ADHD, your might've noticed it's not always easy to get their attention. You might give them a simple task, like drawing a simple stick figure, but somehow they just cannot stay focused.

Do you find this behavior familiar? We have a tip that might help you and your relative out, at least a little bit. The answer as you might've guessed it, is a weighted vest for autism.

See all weighted autism vests on Amazon

weighted vest for autism

Can a weighted vest help autistic children & adults?

While all children and adults with autism will respond differently to a weighted vest, the majority respond in a very positive manner. These vests are your not typical weighted vest, but rather specially designed to be used for autism in mind. These vests are considered to be a sort of therapy and fall under the category of "sensory integration". 

Autism vests are constructed to weight about 10% of the bearers total body weight. There are however sensory weighted vests that are much lighter, these are specifically made for preschool children and will weight about 2-3% of the total body weight.

So how do they work? Studies have shown that people who struggle to stay focused are suffering from sensory overload, in other words they're getting too much information at once. A special weighted vest for autism will put constant pressure on the child or adult, calming them down. This compression provides the bearer with something called deep pressure stimulation. The stimulation helps the central nervous system to keep things in check so to speak. For some, the vest will also stimulate other systems, like the limbic system. A stimulated limbic system will decrease excitement, thus helping the child or adult to process different changes in their nearby surroundings. 

While there haven't been too much scientific research done on this subject, there's plenty of evidence coming from autism therapists all over the world. A weighted autism vest can change how the body reacts to information in a positive way, typically improving problematic behavior.

How does a weighted vest for autism work?

In order to fully understand how a weighted vest for autism works, we need to take a look at what's causing children and adults with autism to act differently. People with autism have problems with their proprioception, it's basically the system in our brain that helps us know where we have our limbs at any given time. When I raise my right hand over my head, I know it's there because of a fully functional proprioception.

Proprioception works together with the receptors located in your tendons and muscles, together they work to tell your brain what your body is doing.​ People with autism can have a hard time controlling their limbs, luckily theses proprioception receptors will responds to stimulation. They are stimulated by either physical activity or compression. That's where the vest comes into play, by hugging the body tightly the receptors will be stimulated.

weighted autism vest

Another issue autistic people face is hypersensitive skin. The receptors located on the skin informs your body of changes in your environment​. They are the receptors that informs your body if there are any dangerous changes. As you can imagine, someone with autism will overreact to these changes, a slight gust of wind or a sudden change in temperature will have twice (if not more) the effect on an autistic person. Normal responses to this is to either become irritable or start erratic behavior where violence may come into play.

These kinds of vests only have benefits to them

If you've come this far, you probably realized that there's only benefits to these types of autism vests. If you have a kid or a loved one that has autism, a weighted vest can be a great choice. They aren't expensive and will drastically improve their well-being, isn't that worth a shot?

Wearing A Weighted Vest All Day – Good or Bad?

wearing a weighted vest all day

A common question we get asked is: Can I wear a weighted vest all day long? 

The answer to that is both yes and no. It all comes down to how fit you are and if you've used a weighted vest before. If you're just starting out with weighted training, it's very important to take it easy for a while. The benefits of wearing a weight vest all day are:

  • More burnt calories
  • Stronger bones
  • Muscular development 
wearing a weighted vest all day

Generally speaking, it is safe to wear vest all day long, but that's assuming you're taking it easy and increasing difficulty in small increments. If you do it improper, it will end badly for your joints, bones and muscles.

Take it easy and steady

While your muscle enjoy a good ol' shock once in a while, your joints do not. If you weigh 100 pounds and suddenly decide to wear a 70 pound vest for several hours, your body will have no time to adapt. People who train this way are very likely to become injured in one way or another. And let me tell you, fixing joint problems is not an easy thing to do.

But if you're smart and decide to take it slow, your body will gain huge benefits from wearing a weighted vest all day. When you first start out​ it's better to start a very low weight, 5% of your total body weight is what we recommend. 

There's also nothing that says you need to have the vest on for a full day. Start with half-days if you feel like that's a better progression. Now depending on your goal, you could either try wearing the vest for a full day, or keep doing half-days but with added weight.

Get yourself a vest that is comfortable

There are literally hundreds of different vests out there, but only a few are comfortable enough to wear all day long. It's important that you get yourself a vest that has a good fit but is also padded around the shoulders and neck. A common problem people get while wearing a vest all day is becoming sore in their neck and shoulders due to a bad and uncomfortable fit. ​

Not only is a comfortable vest is important, but what you're wearing on feet is actually quite important too. If you're a beginner we highly recommend that you use shoes with plenty of padding, if you can use shoes with ankle supports that's even better. If you skimp out on the shoes you can develop plantar fasciitis, also known as heel pain.

Wear it all day, but do it with caution

So while wearing a weight vest all day is not bad, you have to take precautions to prevent yourself from getting injured. If you do it correctly there's plenty of benefits, you'll grow stronger, get a leaner body and also improve your stamina. Don't be discouraged if you feel tired and sore after the first day, even with low weights. This is completely normal and is actually a good sign, the following days you body will become less and less sore as it gets used to the weight. 

It's also a good idea to see a doctor, just to make sure you won't have any problems with the vest on for several hours.​

Best Weighted Vests For Running 2017

weighted vests for running
weighted vests for running

If you're a long distance runner or sprinter, I'm pretty sure you've wondered if you can become any faster. Well I'm here with some good news, the answer is yes. In this article I'll cover the benefits from running with a weighted vest and which are one the best the year, 2017.

Using a weight vest for running and training will not only improve your endurance but also your speed. It's ideal for runners wanting to improve their explosiveness and get those world record speeds. Are you ready to change your life?

Weight vests for running come in many sizes, shapes and colors. Since you'll be wearing the vest for longer periods of time, it's important that you get yourself something that sits good. While it's possible to use any vest, there are specific models designed for running in mind. But before we get into all that, let's take a look at the benefits and if there are downsides.

The best weight vests for running

As stated above, practically any weighted vest can be used for running, but if you want maximum comfortability and performance, it's recommended to get something specifically made for running. Down below you will find our favorite running weight vests.

Hyperwear Hyper Vest

This is one of our favorite vests, we have a written review of it in case you're interested in something more in-depth. The Hyperwear is quite expensive, but also one of the best available on the market today.

It's made from flexible fabric which is odor resistant and also keeps you cool during hot summer workout sessions. The sides are open for even more ventilation. Thanks to the stretchy fabric and slim profile you get full range of motion, it doesn't feel like it restricts your breathing either.

The biggest downside is the lack of included weights, 10lbs is not a lot, even for small person. You could buy additional weights, but the only extra weight pack gives you a mere 5 lbs increase. In total this vest will be able to hold 15 pounds. It's ideal for long distance runners, but if you're a sprinter you might want to look for something heavier.

See all reviews and ratings on Amazon

Hyperwear Vest Pro

IronWear Speed Vest

The IronWear Speed vest is not as popular as the Hyperwear one, but still offers a great workout for runners and athletes. It's made specifically for running sports, like track and field, soccer, football and baseball. Also check out or IronWear Speed vest review.

It's made from a breathable polyester mesh material which allows cool air flow through vest. The mesh materials makes it resistant to liquids as well, it's even possible to take it for a swim. It's fully padded and has large open gaps for your arms, allowing for full range of motion.

This weighted running vest comes in two versions, short and long. The shorter version weights 10 pounds while the longer one weighs about 17 pounds. Sadly it's not possible to add any more weights.

See all reviews and ratings on Amazon

ironwear speed vest review

Cross 101 Vest

Cross 101 is a "cooler" running weight vest, with a cool paint job and plenty of slots for weights. It has a similar shape to the IronWear but is not as breathable.  The best about the Cross 101 is its price, being the cheapest of all three. We have a written review of the Cross 101.

While it's not a completely true running vest​, it offers full range of motion and has the ability to hold a lot more weight, 40 pounds to be exact. It comes with ten 4lbs iron weights, so you can easily adjust the weight for your level.

This vest is a one size fits all, it should be comfortable for almost everyone as long as your adjust it properly. But even with it adjusted properly the vest can still rub against your skin when your run, so keep that in mind.

See all reviews and ratings on Amazon

cross 101 weighted vest

The benefits with a weighted vest for running

Obviously there are huge benefits to this training method, otherwise there wouldn't be as many products out there. There are three major benefits to wearing a weighted vest when running:

  • Improved cardio
  • Faster Speeds
  • Improved skeletal structure

The effects of running or walking with a vest were recently examined in this article.

Running with the vest on will be a real burden, both for you body and your mind. But this is what you want, the body builds strength to hold all that extra weight, when you take the vest off you're suddenly stronger than before.

The cardiovascular benefits

A person weighing 300lbs will have a much harder time when it comes to running, it's because they weigh more. That extra weight puts more pressure on your cardiovascular system, meaning you have to push yourself harder than to ever to go the same distance as your normally do. Now sadly overweight people can't just take those extra pounds off after their workout, we can however. You could say you're tricking the body in a way and thus developing your breathing and oxygen intake.

Increases your running speed

Because of the additional weight, your muscles will have to work twice as hard to perform the same movements as before. But just doing a normal run with the vest on will not give any major benefits to your speed. To become faster you need to do sprints with the vest, getting that speed is all about being as explosive as possible.

Denser bones

Having all that extra load on your body makes your bones thicker, which is great for preventing any potential injuries. The extra weight stimulates your osteoblasts cells, the response from these cells is to create new bone material in order to support the load on your body.

Things to keep in mind

Like always, if there are benefits there are drawbacks. While most of these drawbacks can be avoided by being careful, it's still worth taking a look at potential problems, especially if you're a beginner.

Too much load will alter your running style

One thing to avoid is to use too much weight, running with a weight vest that is too heavy will have negative effects on your running style. You'll find yourself having a lower and shorter stride, and even though you're in a better physical form before, you won't notice any difference in speed or distance.

Potential stress on your joints

This doesn't apply to everyone, but it's worth keeping mind that a weighted vest for running might cause unnecessary stress on your joints and ligaments. To prevent this it's recommended to start slowly, don't put on all the weights at once, instead increase the weight in small increments. A good starting point is 5% of your body weight. If you feel discomfort in knees or other joints after a workout session, you should decrease the amount of weight or just not use the vest at all.