In this article, we have reviewed the best weighted vests for CrossFit. If you are in a hurry, the table below gives a quick snapshot of the top ones.
CrossFit training is a form of high-intensity workout that comprises several movement exercises. These movements could be as simple as something you would perform daily, like squatting, lunging, pushing or pulling up, etc.
Performing these activities repetitively and in a sequence helps to strengthen various muscle groups in your body. CrossFit exercise emphasis on three things-Load, Distance, and Speed.
It is believed that CrossFit training is offered in more than 13000 gyms in 120 countries and that there are 4 million CrossFit enthusiasts across the globe[i].
CrossFit exercises can work for all groups of people and for multiple objectives. From beginners to veterans, CrossFit can be used to accomplish anything from weight loss to improving performance. If interested, we have a separate article on other exercises such as strength exercises, aerobic exercises, and exercises for bone health.
Our Top Choice – Best Weighted Vest for CrossFit
The CAP Barbell Unisex-Adult Barbell HHWV-CB020S Short Adjustable Weighted Vest, 20 lb., Short 20-Pound, Black is our top choice for the best weighted vest for CrossFit, for the following reasons:
- It is a heavy-duty and sturdy weighted vest
- The vest comes in weight-limit options from 20lbs to 150lbs
- You get solid metal bars instead of sandbags in vests weighing more than 100lbs
- The vest has anchor hooks for parachute run training
- The lowest weight-limit vest is extremely compact
- It has padded shoulder straps
Best Weighted Vest for CrossFit
#1 CAP Barbell Short and Long Weighted Vest
This polyester and nylon weighted vest is very sturdy and convenient for people who work out with very heavy weights.
Features and Benefits
This weighted vest from CAP Barbell packs quite a punch. The black vest is made of reinforced nylon and polyester for durability. It also comes with padded shoulder pads to ensure comfort during extended wear.
The vest comes in various weight limits- 20lbs, 40lbs, 50lbs, 60lbs, 70lbs, 80lbs, 100lbs, 120lbs and 150lbs.
There are two options for you to choose from- the short, and the regular. The 20lbs vest is short and ends just below your chest. This is particularly useful if you are a small-built person or are a beginner and want your vest to be compact.
All the other options are long vests and end at your waist. However, the vest is very adjustable, and the fit can be customized easily.
If you go in for the 100+ lbs vests, the weight packets are solid steel bars and not sandbags. This is very useful because sandbags develop tears in the bottom over time and become less effective.
It is also much easier to load and unload metal weights than sandbags. Also, you rarely find solid metal weights at this price point, and hence this product is a real value add.
This CrossFit weighted vest also has anchor hooks to use while training for parachute runs. This feature is not available in most other products in the market.
As with many good-quality vests, this one too has reflective strips to ensure visibility in darkness.
Why should you buy it?
This is a very good all-around weighted vest. At higher weight (100 lbs or greater) varieties, it comes with solid metal weights instead of sandbags, which is a big plus.
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#2 RUNFast/Max Camouflage Weighted Vest
This weighted vest from RUNFast comes in 8 different weight limits and fits very well. It also comes with a shoulder strap for more comfort.
Features and Benefits
RUNFast brings out this versatile weighted vest for CrossFit training. The vest comes in 8 different base weight– 12lbs, 20lbs, 40lbs, 50lbs, 60lbs, 80lbs, 120lbs, and 140lbs. This includes the sandbags, which can be removed to make the vest lighter.
Balance is of the highest priority given the intensity of the weighted vest CrossFit workouts. Even if there is a slight displacement of weights during the exercises, a loss in balance may lead to serious injury.
Users of this weighted vest have commended it for its balance. Through its 5 weight pockets in the front and the back, sandbags can be uniformly mounted onto this vest. The vest is black in color and made of high-quality nylon.
The vest comes with a two-strap system that can be fastened around the body with the help of Velcro. Users have remarked that the weighted vest fits very well over the contours of the body. They have also observed that this vest does not cause any rash or skin irritation on regular use.
There is also an option of purchasing the weighted vest with shoulder straps, the use of which is strongly advised, as the vest may chaff skin and cause cuts in the long run.
However, it should be noted that the shoulder straps on the RUNFast weighted vest cannot be fastened to the vest. They can merely be inserted between the shoulders and the vest and be expected to remain in position due to the weight of the vest.
This is not the ideal scenario, especially when the shoulder straps come at an additional price. In the case of outdoor workouts, you may want to carry your phone and hydration around. This vest makes that possible by including a holder for a mobile phone and a water bottle. Now you can work out without worry.
One big drawback that users have reported with this vest is that the sandbags don’t last very long. There have been instances of the sandbags giving away at the bottom and the iron filings soiling clothes.
Why should you buy it?
If you are looking for a well-balanced and well-fitting weighted vest, this should be your choice. It has wide base-weight options, from 12lbs to 140lbs.
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#3 CROSS101 Weighted Vest
The CROSS101 weighted vest is quite durable as it is made of canvas and fits quite well on the upper torso.
Features and Benefits
This canvas weighted vest from Cross101 comes in 5 weight limits: 20lbs, 40lbs, 60lbs, 80lbs, and 140 lbs. Each of these can either be purchased with or without shoulder straps. The vest is camouflage colored, making it resistant to stains.
Each vest contains 10 removable weights, 5 of which can be loaded in the front and 5 in the back. Such an arrangement ensures balance and stability while working out.
The weights in this vest sit high on your chest, and the vest ends well above your stomach. This is quite convenient, as some other products in the market are very long and rub into your belly as you work out.
The weighted vest can be tightened or loosened based on the size of your torso, making it a one-size-fits-all product for all customers. The durable Velcro straps ensure a snug fit ensuring that the vest stays in place even when you move extensively.
There is a flap pocket in the front to hold mobile phones and a holder for water bottles. The vest seems solidly built with strong seams to ensure durability.
Why should you buy it?
If you are looking for a very comfortable weighted vest that is also durable, you should pick this product.
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#4 Aduro Sport Weighted Vest
This product from Aduro is a very compact weighted vest that is suitable for various light workouts.
Features and Benefits
All weighted vests we have reviewed thus far are variable-weight vests, comprising small weight packets or bars that can be loaded or unloaded to make the vest lighter or heavier. They also serve users across the board from 20lbs to 150lbs.
While this is very convenient for people who work out heavily, such vests can be too bulky for beginners, who may find it difficult to use and move the vest.
For such users, this vest from Aduro is a blessing in disguise. The black vest is made of breathable neoprene material, which facilitates air circulation. The vest comes in 8 weight limits- 4lbs, 6lbs, 12lbs, 16lbs, 20lbs, 25lbs, and 30lbs.
However, it is important to note that the vest does not come with weight bags to increase or decrease the weight of the vest. That said, this vest comes with a mesh pocket at the back, in case you need to carry your phone around.
It is a one-size-fits-all model with adjustable buckles for a comfortable fit. Given that the maximum capacity for this model is 30lbs, the weight of the vest is easily built into its body. Additionally, the surface area covered by the vest is lesser than its heavier counterparts, making it less bulky and highly portable.
The compactness makes this an ideal weighted vest for running and other activities. As with most weighted vests in the market, a few users of this one too have reported leakage of sand owing to wear and tear.
Why should you buy it?
If you are a beginner and are looking for a compact weighted vest for light workouts, then you may pick this. Please remember that this one does not come with additional weights.
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What You Should Look For in a Weighted Vest for CrossFit?
Weighted vests are, true to their name, a layer of clothing with very heavy weights inside. Therefore, they may rub your body more than any regular clothes. It is therefore very important to ensure that the material of the weighted vest is soft on the skin and does not cause abrasion or chafing.
Given that you will almost always wear weighted vests while working out, the material must also be breathable. Materials like neoprene are excellent for this purpose. Weighted vests also come in a nylon and polyester combination, or in canvas.
It is very important to remember that weighted vests must always be worn over a layer of clothing, even if you are not loading them to their maximum weight capacity.
When performing activities like running or jumping, it is very easy to lose balance and sustain injury. It is therefore very important to ensure that the weights in the vest are secured firmly, and do not move about as you work out.
The weight pockets must be present uniformly on the front and rear of the vest, so that you may load the vest uniformly.
Variability of weights
When working out, you may want to vary the weight of your vest according to the intensity of the activity you are doing. For example, while you may want to perform squats with a 30lbs weight, you may want to run only with a 15lbs weight.
Also, you may want to start off light and add more weights as you become more accustomed to the workout routine. For this purpose, the weighted vest needs to come with weight bags that can be loaded and unloaded at your convenience.
Most vests in the market come with multiple small weight bags made of iron filings, or solid metal bars. For example, if the base weight of a vest is 40lbs, it may come with 5 sandbags of 4lbs each, to load the vest to a maximum of 60lbs.
The smaller the weight of one sandbag, the greater the variability you get in your loads.
Comfort and fit
Firstly, a good weighted vest must fit snuggly over your body and ensure your center of gravity rests within your core. The vest must neither hang too close to your neck, not hang too loosely at your waist. The ideal vest must hang around the middle of your chest in the front and the middle of your back in the rear.
Secondly, weighted vests must almost always be worn with a padded shoulder strap. Since all the weight hangs from your shoulders, the vest can cause substantial damage to the skin, muscles, and bones in your shoulder if they are not protected by a padded layer.
Thirdly, vests must be adjustable. Most vests are one-size-fits-all, resulting in variability of fit between large-bodied and small-bodied users. Moreover, the contour of the male body is different from that of the female body.
Weighted vests must take these into consideration, and must come with straps to ensure a proper fit.
Weighted vests must withstand repeated and extensive workouts in harsh conditions. The stitching of the vest and the sandbags must be solid. Very often, users complain of the weighted vest giving away at the shoulders, or the sandbags leaking. A good weighted vest must withstand the test of time.
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Frequently Asked Questions: Weighted Vest for CrossFit
How to Use Weighted Vests for CrossFit?
Weighted vests can be worn over a layer of clothing while engaging in CrossFit working. Just put them on over your shoulder, secure them tightly over your upper body. You may add small additional weights based on your workout.
Who Can Use Weighted Vests?
Generally, people of all ages can use weighted vests. In fact, there are dedicated weighted vests for kids with developmental disorders like ADHD and autism. By the way, we wrote a separate article on the benefits of weighted vest for ADHD.
Women have benefitted from using weighted vests for osteoporosis. However, it is advisable to consult with a healthcare professional in case you think you may have a medical problem with your spine, bones, or muscles.
How Much Do Weighted Vests for CrossFit Weigh?
Weighted vests for CrossFit are highly customizable. There are vests weighing between 4lbs and 30lbs for light users, and between 20lbs and 150lbs for heavy users. Moreover, weighted vests come with small weight packets that can be added to or removed from the vest to vary its weight.
Are Weighted Vests for CrossFit Harmful For Your Spine or Neck?
Weighted vests are not harmful if you load them appropriately and use them correctly. People with back or neck problems must avoid using weighted vests without consulting with their doctor first. A thumb rule regarding weighted vests is that they must not be loaded to more than 10% of body weight, so as to maximize the benefits of weighted vests and minimize injury.
However, under the proper supervision of a professional fitness trainer, you may be able to load more than that. That said, performing an intense physical activity like running may cause injury if not done carefully.
How Much Do Weighted Vests for CrossFit Cost?
Weighted vests for CrossFit come in a variety of prices. However, the most popular ones cost between 30 and 250 dollars, depending on the rated weight, the material used, and the variability of weight packets.
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In this article, we have selected the best-weighted vests for CrossFit, based on the features mentioned in our buyer’s guide and the ratings and comments mentioned by actual users on Amazon.
In our opinion, the CAP Barbell Unisex-Adult Barbell HHWV-CB020S Short Adjustable Weighted Vest, 20 lb., Short 20-Pound, Black is the best choice among the various options that we have considered because it is heavy-duty, is available in multiple weight options, and has metal bars instead of sandbags in its highest weight variants.
If you are looking for a value for money option, you can also consider the Aduro Sport Weighted Vest Workout Equipment, 4lbs/6lbs/12lbs/20lbs/25lbs/30lbs Body Weight Vest for Men, Women, Kids, which is a great vest for light users and women.
While we make every effort to provide updated and correct information, the advice given in this article and website should not be construed as “medical advice.” Please consult with your physician or medical practitioner before using any weighted vest for CrossFit. Each individual may have his or her unique issues, and your medical practitioner is the best person to decide the best-weighted vest for CrossFit in your case.