The weightlifting belt (often just called a lifting belt) is a tool often used in weight training. It is usually made of leather or a sturdy synthetic material. The purpose of the belt is to stabilize the spine through intra-abdominal pressure. So through the interaction of your abdominal pressure and your core muscles, your spine is supported.
You should fasten the belt tightly enough that it cannot be moved easily. However, you should still be able to breathe normally; the belt should not be so tight that it impedes proper breathing. The position of the belt is usually individual. It is best to test different heights and angles to find the perfect position for your body.
A weightlifting belt can be especially useful for basic exercises like deadlifts or squats, since a stable core is especially important for these exercises. The belt has a supporting effect and relieves your spine so you can train more safely and prevent the risk of injury.
Because of the stability that this training equipment gives you, you can even increase your performance. Thus, a weightlifting belt can allow you to move more weight or perform more reps for a given exercise.
However, a weightlifting belt is not for everyone. As an advanced weightlifter, you will benefit from the use of a belt, but as a beginner, you should probably do without it. The reason lies in the available core muscles. These are usually not very pronounced in beginners, but a strong core is the basic prerequisite for using a weightlifting belt.
If you rely too much on the stabilization of the belt, this can even have negative effects in the worst-case scenario. Therefore, as a beginner, you should focus first on learning perfect technique for your exercises and increasing your overall strength before you consider training with a weightlifting belt.
If you decide to train with a belt, you should only use it for exercises that put a lot of stress on your spine and not for lighter or isolation exercises.
The Alpha Progression App shows you which exercises you should use a weightlifting belt for.