There are a lot of fitness gimmicks and gadgets out there, but one of the “Can’t Miss” products that every fitness enthusiast should have is a weighted vest.

If you’ve been a regular visitor to the site or if you’ve taken the time to read some of my product reviews, you know by now that I’m not one to blindly recommend or advise people to spend money on fitness stuff. However, a weight vest is a worthwhile investment.

The weight vest is a very versatile fitness accessory that appropriate for people of all levels of fitness and ability and can be used while doing just about any activity or exercise. A weight vest is a superior and safer option to hand-held or ankle weights because the additional weight is being carried by torso and not at the furthest reaches of the extremities. Wearing a proper weight vest is one of the best ways to strengthen the muscles of the torso – front and back – and can turn almost any exercise into a more effective core exercise. A fifteen-to-twenty-pound weight vest can provide an appropriate challenge for just about everyone, regardless of fitness level.

Carrying additional weight on the torso puts less stress on the joints and connective tissues in the hands, wrists, elbows, shoulders, and feet, ankles, knees and hips. Since the weight is centered on the torso, the body can better balance this additional weight. Using the weight vest also frees up the hands to perform other tasks and increase the intensity of the exercise, without increasing the risk. For example, performing a simple and common movement like jumping jacks while wearing a weight vest will increase the conditioning effect of the exercise, making it more effective.

A weight vest can make any body-weight exercise or calisthenics movement more effective; squat thrusts, push-ups, squats, lunges, pull-ups, bear crawls, jump rope, etc. Certainly, you need to be able to perform any of these exercises with proper form for multiple sets and repetitions before adding the additional load provided by the weight vest. If you’ve never jumped rope or performed proper squats, don’t run out and strap on a weight vest before learning how to do these – or any – exercises. If you buy only one fitness accessory this year, make it a weight vest.


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