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BodyReviews

What Are The Best Weighted Vests? We Look At Box Weighted Vests, Weighted Vests For Women, And More

Best Weighted Vests At A Glance

CROSS101 Weighted Vest With Shoulder Pads

Best Weighted Vest With Shoulder Pads

CROSS101 Weighted Vest With Shoulder Pads

This camo-style weighted vest is available in a weight range of 20-40 lbs and customers can choose whether or not they want shoulder pads.

Has Many Options For Weights

RUNFast/Max 12lbs-140lbs Adjustable Weighted Vest

This black weighted vest is available in weights ranging from 12-140 lbs and shoulder pads are optional. There’s also a water bottle holder in the front.

PACEARTH Weighted Vest With Wrist/Ankle Weights

Weighted Vest Set with Ankle/Wrist Weights

PACEARTH Weighted Vest Set

This vest is available in a weight range of 6-30 lbs. It also comes with a pair of 2-pound ankle or wrist weights that can increase the intensity of your workouts or runs.

Prodigen Running Weight Vest For Women

Best Weighted Vest for Women

Prodigen Running Weight Vest For Women

This vest is available in a weight range of 8-30 lbs and is fastened with 2 adjustable buckle straps.

Offers Heaviest Weight Option

CAP Barbell 20-150 Lb Adjustable Weighted Vest

Looking to train with the heaviest option possible? The CAP Barbell Weighted Vest maxes out at 150 lbs!

Highly Rated Weighted Vest For Kids And Adults

Henkelion Weighted Vest

This vest is available in a weight range of 4-16 lbs and there are 5 options for colors.

Another Great Option For Kids And Adults

Aduro Sport Weighted Vest

This vest is another popular option among kids, women, and men. You can purchase it in weights ranging from 4 to 30 lbs.

Lightweight And Very Affordable

MOVSTAR Weighted Vest

This vest only weighs 10 lbs and is one of the most affordable options on our list.

BOX Weighted Vest By Rogue Fitness

Military Grade Weighted Vest

Rogue Fitness BOX Weighted Vest

The BOX weighted vest is made from military-grade materials that are moisture-resistant. It’s available in 2.5 lbs increments and the max weight capacity is 45 lbs.

We all want to get our beach bodies in shape and look our best for the summer. If you’re searching for something extra to add to your cardio sessions to increase the intensity– or even a way to burn more calories throughout the day– weighted vests may be just the cardio hack you’re looking for.

Just like the name implies, weighted vests are vests with weights sewn or placed into them. The idea is to spread the weight equally, and those extra pounds should help people kick their workouts up a notch and improve body strength.

Read on to see our reviews of top-rated weighted vests on the market as well as find out how weighted vests work and learn how you can use weighted vests for exercise.

How We Chose The Best Weighted Vests

When building this review, we selected as many products as possible that met the following criteria:

  • Several Options for Weight – Most of the vests in our review are available in several weight options. Several of them range in size from 20 lbs up to 140 lbs and can be chosen in increments of roughly 20 lbs. We also made sure to include a mix of lightweight and heavyweight vests to provide a better range of options.
  • Comfort – We found the most comfortable weight vests possible based on consumer reviews. Keep in mind that the weight will be pressing down on your shoulders, so you want shoulder pads that safely cushion the weight and spread it evenly. It is easily overlooked by so many people, as they focus mostly on the total weight of the vest. Remember, 30 pounds spread over 12 square inches will feel better than 10 pounds spread over 3 square inches. For runners, the vest must be adjustable so that they can tighten it around the torso. Loose vests will slap against you while running, and that isn’t fun.
  • Special Features – Each vest has its own special features like a back mesh pocket, a phone or water bottle holder, shoulder pads, and reflective stripes.
  • Highly Rated – All of the vests are rated as 4 stars or greater based on thousands of consumer reviews.
  • Affordability – The majority of weight vests in our review are under $100, with several only costing $25-$65. While some options do get a bit expensive once you exceed 100 lbs for added weight, practically every vest can be purchased at an affordable price assuming you choose a standard weight.

Top Weighted Vests: Weighted Vests Reviews

If you are looking to buy weighted vests online, we have some suggestions for you. 

CROSS101 Weighted Vest With Shoulder Pads

Best Weighted Vest With Shoulder Pads

CROSS101 Weighted Vest With Shoulder Pads

  • Weight: 20-140 lbs
  • Fit: Velcro belt, adjustable straps
  • Style: Camo
  • Special Features: Optional shoulder pads, water bottle holder

We mentioned how important comfort is, and this weighted vest by Cross101 comes with optional shoulder pads on every weight you select.

The loads go from 20 lbs to 140 lbs, so this weighted vest is an excellent option for both beginners and more advanced gym-goers.

This vest is made of durable materials resistant to wear and tear, and there is also a built-in water holder. In addition, the weights can be removed from the vest so that you can find your ideal workout load.

Features

  • Able to include shoulder pads
  • Options for heavy weight
  • Includes water bottle holder

But be aware of…

  • Only one color
  • Limited selection for lighter weights
  • Velcro belt may not be secure enough for some users

Has Many Options For Weights

RUNFast/Max 12lbs-140lbs Adjustable Weighted Vest

  • Weight: 12-140 lbs
  • Fit: Velcro belt, adjustable straps
  • Style: Black
  • Special Features: Optional shoulder pads, water bottle holder

Similar to the CROSS101, the RUNFast/Max Weighted Vest is available in a wide range of weight options that span from as light as 12 lbs up to 140 lbs.

You can choose to purchase this weighted vest with or without shoulder pads and there’s even a water bottle holder in the front.

Features

  • Able to include shoulder pads
  • Options for heavy weight
  • Includes water bottle holder

But be aware of…

  • Only one color
  • Limited selection for lighter weights
  • Velcro belt may not be secure enough for some users

PACEARTH Weighted Vest With Wrist/Ankle Weights

Weighted Vest Set with Ankle/Wrist Weights

PACEARTH Weighted Vest Set

  • Weight: 6-30 lbs
  • Fit: 2 adjustable straps with buckle
  • Style: Black, fuchsia, gray
  • Special Features: Ankle/wrist weights, back mesh pocket

If you are looking for a good running vest, PACEARTH’s weighted vest set is an excellent option. It comes with a pair of 2-pound ankle or wrist weights that can increase the intensity of your workouts or runs.

This vest is available in a weight range of 6-30 lbs and is made of top-quality materials, and the design distributes the weight evenly. There are also adjustable straps to ensure comfort and prevent slipping.

Features

  • Available in 3 colors
  • Great for beginners
  • Reflective stripes for early morning/nighttime training

But be aware of…

  • Some people may want greater coverage
  • No options for heavy weight
  • Lacks front pocket

Prodigen Running Weight Vest For Women

Best Weighted Vest for Women

Prodigen Running Weight Vest For Women

  • Weight: 8-30 lbs
  • Fit: 2 adjustable straps with buckle
  • Style: Black, blue, gray, purple
  • Special Features: Back mesh pocket

If you’re seeking a lighter-weight vest that has some personality to it, then the Prodigen Running Weight Vest is a great option.

It has a weight range of 8-30 lbs, making it ideal for those who are new to weighted vest training or who want a less intense experience. It’s also available in 4 different colors compared to most other products that are only available in 1 color.

The front side has all of the weight fitted into straps that run vertically down either side of the chest, so they’re to the side of, rather than over, the breasts, making this a comfortable option for women.

Features

  • 4 colors
  • Great for beginners
  • Reflective stripes for early morning/nighttime training

But be aware of…

  • Some people may want greater coverage
  • No options for heavy weight
  • Lacks front pocket

Offers Heaviest Weight Option

CAP Barbell 20-150 Lb Adjustable Weighted Vest

  • Weight: 20-150 lbs
  • Fit: Fully adjustable waist belt and padded shoulder straps
  • Style: Black
  • Special Features: Reflective stripes, has anchor hooks for parachute run training, integrated pocket for phone



Looking to train with the heaviest option possible? The CAP Barbell Weighted Vest maxes out at 150 lbs!

This weighted vest is available in both short and regular sizes and has a weight range of 20-150 lbs. It’s made from reinforced nylon and polyester and comes with a fully adjustable waist belt and padded shoulder straps to help you achieve a secure fit.

You can adjust the weight by adding or removing packets of iron ore fines and this vest features reflective stripes for visibility during early morning or nighttime training as well as hooks for parachute training.

Features

  • Short or regular coverage
  • Options for heavy weight
  • Includes hooks for parachute training

But be aware of…

  • Only one color
  • Limited selection for lighter weights
  • Less padding in shoulders than other vests

Highly Rated Weighted Vest For Kids And Adults

Henkelion Weighted Vest

  • Weight: 4-16 lbs
  • Fit: Single buckle strap
  • Style: Black, blue, gray, pink, purple
  • Special Features: Reflective straps, mesh pocket

Finally, a weighted vest that the whole family can use! The Henkelion Weighted Vest is available in 5 different colors and is offered in weights of 4-16 lbs.

It comes with a single buckle strap that not’s super tight and allows for breathability and a full range of motion. Additionally, it features a back mesh pocket and is filled with premium iron pellets and metal rock.

Features

  • 5 colors
  • Great for beginners
  • Reflective stripes for early morning/nighttime training

But be aware of…

  • Some people may want greater coverage
  • No options for heavy weight
  • Lacks front pocket

Another Great Option For Kids And Adults

Aduro Sport Weighted Vest

  • Weight: 4-30 lbs
  • Fit: Single buckle strap
  • Style: Black
  • Special Features: Back mesh pocket, lifetime limited warranty

The Aduro Sport Weighted Vest is another popular option among kids, women, and men. You can purchase it in weights ranging from 4 to 30 lbs and it too is secured by a single buckle strap.

This weighted vest features a mesh pocket on the back and is backed by a lifetime limited warranty.

Features

  • Mesh pocket on back
  • Great for beginners
  • Reflective stripes for early morning/nighttime training

But be aware of…

  • Some people may want greater coverage
  • No options for heavy weight
  • Lacks front pocket

Lightweight And Very Affordable

MOVSTAR Weighted Vest

  • Weight: 10 lbs
  • Fit: Velcro straps
  • Style: White reflective with yellow trim and black strap
  • Special Features: Wide shoulder straps, storage pocket

If you’re not concerned with purchasing a heavier weight vest and just want a product that’s affordable and provides you with the basics, then the MOVSTAR Weighted Vest will work just fine.

This vest only weighs 10 lbs which is ideal for beginners and younger users. Additionally, it features a large velcro strap and wide shoulder straps for optimal comfort.

Features

  • Ideal for beginners
  • Very comfortable
  • Has storage pocket

But be aware of…

  • Only one color
  • Only one weight option
  • Some users may want a more secure fit

BOX Weighted Vest By Rogue Fitness

Military Grade Weighted Vest

Rogue Fitness BOX Weighted Vest

  • Weight: 2.5-45 lbs
  • Fit: BOX belt system
  • Style: Black
  • Special Features: Military grade

BOX weighted vests are compact with natural contouring and padded body and shoulders for increased comfort. The maximum capacity is 45 lbs, and the west weight is available in 2.5 lbs increments.

The BOX weighted vest is made from military-grade materials that are moisture-resistant. All vests are made in the US and come with a lifetime warranty.

Features

  • Available in 2.5 lb increments
  • Options for heavy weight
  • Military-grade exterior materials

But be aware of…

  • Only one color
  • More expensive than other options
  • Belt may be uncomfortable while training

Benefits Of Weighted Vests

There are plenty of benefits associated with the use of weighted vests while training. Let’s take a closer look at how they help for walking, running, and other aspects of health and athleticism.

Weighted Vests for Walking

Regular walking leads to better cardiovascular health and reduced chances of developing heart disease. It can help control hypertension, improve cholesterol levels, reduce tension and anxiety, slow down osteoporosis, and support weight loss.

Studies show that using weighted walking vests can increase the intensity of this activity and the stimulus for muscle and bone building. That means more calories burned, which is vital if you want to lose some fat and prepare for the summer.

This study used vests that weighed as much as 20% of body weight. That’s 34 pounds for a 170-pound walker. Using heavier vests produced greater benefits.  However, those heavy weighted vests (20% of body weight) may not be practical for everyday use, as they can be uncomfortable when worn for long periods of time, and will make you fatigue faster. 

Weighted Vests for Running

Wearing weighted vests while running can help activate the upper part of our body since the weight applies to shoulders and spine, in addition to legs. That can help you burn more calories and slim down while building a little more muscle. 

However, athletes usually look for the best weighted vests for running to improve their performance, not lose weight. But, do weighted vests work for that?

Just like we mentioned in the section about weighted training vests and working out, wearing them during daily activities could help improve running performance. The simple logic behind this is that our bodies adjust to a higher weight load, and then when we take the vest off, we feel lighter and run faster.

Similarly, wearing top-weighted vests during a warm-up session could help athletes achieve better subsequent running performance. In fact, doing so can lead to an increase in peak speed, better running economy (less oxygen needed), and improved leg stiffness (parameters that describe leg function while running).

However, competitive athletes probably should ditch the weighted vest as the date of their race nears. You still want to follow the principle of training the same way you compete. 

Weighted Vests for Women

Research has shown that exercising with weighted vests can improve bone mass and strength in postmenopausal women. These findings are very important, as older women often have problems with muscle and bone mass loss, and using weighted vests seems to improve those parameters significantly.

It’s probable that women can benefit from weighted vests more than men, or from using lighter vests for longer periods. For instance, women’s skeletal muscles and fiber composition are more geared towards endurance-based activities, so they’ll likely benefit the most from wearing weighted vests during everyday activities, walks, or jogs. 

In comparison, men may benefit more from wearing heavier vests for a shorter time during intensive bouts of exercise.

Some weighted vests are also designed specifically for women, using various strap designs in the front so that the weight goes around and between, but not over, the breasts.  This necessarily limits the weight that can be used, however.

Weighted Vest Exercise Resources

Need some ideas for training with your weighted vest? Here are 2 videos to help! The first video reviews the top exercises to do while training with a weighted vest and the second video provides a quick, full-body, HIIT workout.

TOP 10 Weighted Vest Exercises

Weighted Vest HIIT Workout

FAQs About Weighted Vests

What Does A Weighted Vest Do?

Weighted vests are designed to be worn during training in order to increase the intensity of your workout. They help build strength and endurance while also promoting fat loss by increasing how many calories you burn per session through their thermal effect and due to the extra resistance you have to carry. They’re typically worn while completing bodyweight-based exercises as well as aerobic activities.

How Much Does A Weighted Vest Cost?

Typically, the cost of a weighted vest increases as the weight gets heavier. Most lightweight options cost anywhere from $25-$75, whereas heavier vests cost anywhere from $100-$400.

How Heavy Should A Weighted Vest Be?

This depends on factors such as a person’s level of athleticism and strength, age, and fitness goals. When first starting out, it’s generally best for most women to start out with no more than 20 lbs and for men no more than 40-60 lbs. Individuals who have more experience with resistance training may be able to start out with a heavier weight than those who are beginners, but they should still gradually increase the weight of their vest over the course of several weeks.

If you’re trying to add a bit of resistance while performing light aerobic activities, then a weight range of 4-20 lbs should do the job. If you’re training for something slightly more intense, however, then you should pick a weight that’s challenging but allows you to still complete movements with proper form.

Finally, if you’re training for a career that requires you to take on heavy loads such as firefighting or the military, then you may be one of the lucky few who gets to experiment with weighted vests that are 100 lbs +, depending on the tasks your job requires. Most people, however, tend to wear weighted vests that are 40 lbs or less.

Can You Lose Weight Wearing A Weighted Vest?

Absolutely! But, you’ll need to pair your training with a clean diet, live in a caloric deficit, and get enough recovery to maximize results. Wearing a weighted vest certainly enables people to burn more calories than they normally would, but, as with any type of training, you need to have all your ducks in a row.


Editor’s note: we are regularly updating this review. If you see any problems, weird interpretations of the data, or just want to say hi, please reach out to hello@the-unwinder.com.

Photo by Natalie Runnerstrom on Unsplash

About the author

Dusan is a content writer focusing on biology and science-related topics. His love for biology, nature, and science has helped him gain a better understanding of the world around us. He loves keeping up to date with new research and creating evidence-based content to help improve people’s lives. In his free time, he enjoys hiking trips, camping, exercising, and cooking healthy meals in his tiny kitchen.

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