It always surprises me when I enter a weight room and see people weightlifting without a pair of lifting straps.
Even for lower weight ranges, the added grip may provide more safety. But it’s for those low rep sets that lifters might notice the biggest difference.
Unfortunately, as a long-time fitness instructor, I’ve encountered more than my fair share of unreliable lifting straps. I’ve had some rips during a deadlift, and others cause painful blisters, prompting me to research and explore the best lifting straps.
Consider the following weightlifting straps, which we've rigorously tested.
The Best Lifting Straps For Weightlifting
- Best Overall Lifting Straps for Weightlifting: Grip Power
- Cheapest Lifting Straps for Weightlifting: Harbinger
- Best Adjustable Lifting Straps for Weightlifting: Dark Iron Fitness
- Best Lifting Straps for Bodybuilding: Grip Power Pads PRO
- Best Comfort-Designed Lifting Straps for Weightlifters: Anvil Fitness Lifting Straps
- Best One-Size-Fits-All Lifting Straps for Weightlifters: Nordic Lifting Straps
- Best Lifting Straps for Powerlifters: Serious Steel Fitness
- Best High-Quality Lifting Straps for Weightlifting: IronMind Lifting Straps
- Best Leather Olympic Lifting Straps for Weightlifting: Stoic Olympic Lifting Straps
- Best Durable Cotton Lifting Straps for Weightlifting: Spud Weightlifting Straps
Our Top Lifting Straps (December 2023)
1 - Grip Power Cobra Grips (Best Overall)
These figure 8 lifting straps might be the most versatile ones.
They might significantly improve your grip strength and are fast and easy to get on and off as you need them.
Once you’ve picked the right size for your wrist straps, there should be no issue with pressure points or friction due to the neoprene padding.
Many users comment on how it helped them add more reps to their usual routines and how good its quality and design are.
Be extra careful with sizing, though, with some users recommending buying a slightly bigger size from your actual measurements to be sure.
- Available in 3 size options for better comfort
- Extra stitching should help with durability
- Figure 8 lasso lifting straps should make it fast and easy to use
- Many positive comments about improved grip strength
- Might take a few tries to get it positioned right
Just give yourself a few lifts with lighter weights to get used to the optimum positioning and secure grip on your hands before lifting heavy weights.
We love that the company gives you a year to try this easy lifting strap, and if you don't feel it's working for you, you have the option to return or exchange it with other products.
2 - Harbinger Cotton Lifting Straps (Cheapest Option)
Harbinger padded cotton lifting straps are ideal for athletes who experience wrist strain with heavy weights, offering relief without causing damage. This is particularly interesting for weightlifters to prevent the lifting wrist straps from digging into their skin.
And if you’re conscious of matching up your gym gear by color, then you’ll like the choices Harbinger has to offer. It's perfect if you want your weightlifting straps to blend in with your gym bag.
Many of our clients like the color options, but some noticed that there are times when it doesn't create much grip.
- Padded lifting straps may reduce pressure on the wrists
- Some customers like the heavy-duty stitching, which should last for a long time.
- Available in different colors to match up with your gym gear
- Might be a bit tight fitting for athletes with bigger wrists
Just be aware that if you have a particularly large wrist, then this wrist protector might feel a bit tight. But with the length of these lifting straps, it can provide a strong wrap on the bar to help you lift with more confidence.
3 - Dark Iron Fitness Leather Lifting Straps (Best Adjustable)
Leather lifting straps may offer two good advantages. First of all, they should last a lot longer, and secondly, they should offer a good bit more grip than cotton or nylon straps.
We also like that the added layers of reinforced stitching may make these lifting straps suitable for lifters who get into the competitive weight ranges.
With a long yet thick wrist strap with options of 2 and 3mm in thickness, it should easily wrap around a barbell two to three times.
Some opted for 2mm in the beginning, but there are some cases where it ripped halfway through a routine. The company was nice enough to replace and upgrade it to a 3mm, which was way tougher than the previous thickness.
- Leather suede
- Soft material may reduce pressure on the skin and improve grip
- Triple stitching may improve durability for pro-level use
- Easily adjusted to different wrist sizes
- Straps might take a while to break-in
We noted that the only downside is that the leather might take a few days to fully break-in, so maybe try them with lower loads initially.
4 - Grip Power Pads PRO (Best for Bodybuilding)
These are another pair of weight lifting straps with neoprene padding that the company claims may help folks with strains or injuries.
We also found that the longer length might suit some folks, especially with heavier bars where you want maximum confidence in your lifting straps.
With three different length options, you can choose the most suitable one to help you with the most challenging lifting routines.
But be careful with the cross pattern that holds the foam in place as it can leave some crazy marks on your wrists after a long session.
- Cotton and neoprene
- May provide better wrist support with comfortable neoprene padding
- Extended Length may suit athletes lifting heavier weights
- The silicone lettering seems to provide some added grip
- They might be a bit wide for some powerlifters
Just note that these lifting straps are a bit wider than standard, which might not be ideal for all types of lifting.
5 - Anvil Fitness Lifting Straps (Best Comfort-Designed)
This closed loop lifting strap should make it a bit easier and faster to wrap 2 to 3 times around the bar. We also liked the smooth edges, which on other lifting straps might quickly cause blisters or calluses.
The neoprene padding may also be thick enough to offer some protection from wrist injuries. The extra padding might be helpful if you’ve had some previous sprains.
Some users note some stitches immediately came out so this pair of lifting straps only lasted them 2 weeks, yet it lasted for about 2 years for others without too much damage.
It would be nice to give beginners instructions on how to use these lifting straps as using it the wrong way can make its life span shorter.
- Strategically placed neoprene padding may help to relieve pressure and injury
- Smooth, comfortable edges prevent skin blisters and calluses
- Single wrist loop strap makes it easy and fast to adjust
- Some people find the lifting strap material a bit too thick
Powerlifters looking for a lifting strap that isn’t too thick might need to consider a different option.
6 - Nordic Lifting Straps (Best One-Size-Fits-All)
We love the Nordic weightlifting brand, and its one-size-fits-all easy lifting strap design as it seems to be fast and easy to get a comfortable silicone grip for lifting or pull ups.
Its extra-long, heavy-duty lifting straps can provide wrist support during your most strenuous lifting sessions, preventing grip fatigue and improving stability so you can lift heavier weights with confidence.
Also, these solidly made wrist straps are ideal for a range of grip training activities, including powerlifting, gym workouts, and pulling exercises that target your traps.
Furthermore, these heavy lifting straps come in a good choice of color options so you can match them up with your other weight training gear.
- Size adjustment is fast and seems to hold in place securely
- Many reviews highlight that they don’t tend to cause pressure points
- Available in a good range of color options
- Might not be suitable for smaller wrist sizes
The only thing we noticed on one of our female clients is that these deadlift straps might not be the most comfortable for anyone with a slim wrist.
7 - Serious Steel Fitness Figure 8 Lifting Straps (Best for Powerlifters)
The Serious Steel Fitness Figure 8 Lifting Straps are popular with a lot of powerlifters as the design may reduce the chance of slipping or reducing grip.
This pair of lifting straps is designed specifically to help avoid mistakes on deadlifting, which makes it more suitable for people who already have some level of skill and experience.
What we liked is the careful placement of the stitches, which should avoid even small pressure points that could cause sore blisters.
Since they have a figure 8 design, each lifting strap literally stay attached to the wrists even when you try to let go. This feature makes it one of the most secure and reliable weight lifting straps on the market.
- Well placed double stitching should avoid pressure and rubbing
- Good choice for a powerlifter looking best durability
- Figure 8 design allows for fewer problems with lack of grip
- May take a few attempts to get the positioning right
Just give yourself a few attempts with a lower barbell load to make sure you get the lifting strap position right.
8 - IronMind Lifting Straps (Best High-Quality)
IronMind has created these cotton lifting straps as a single loop that makes adjusting and fitting to the barbell quick and easy.
There are many positive comments about the added grip, including the fact that they release quickly once you've finished a set. Once we got the right tightness, the strap felt comfortable with no sore points to cause trouble.
When it comes to heavy weights like a barbell, it's an excellent choice for both new and experienced lifters due to the exceptional strength of the high quality, well constructed material.
Like most online users, we were surprised by how this basic lifting strap turned out to be. It looks durable and solid with its high-quality cotton strap material.
- The single loop may provide an easier and more secure hold on the bar
- May suit powerlifters as they release quickly
- No rubbing or pressure points from misplaced stitching
- Getting the tightness right doesn’t seem as easy with these lifting strap
We just found that adjusting how tight you want the lifting strap isn’t as easy as other cotton straps on the market.
9 - Stoic Olympic Lifting Straps (Best Leather Olympic)
The Stoic Olympic lifting straps are another leather option, and this time we were pleasantly surprised that it didn’t take much time to break in the leather materials.
It’s a simple weight lifting strap design that claims to make it easier and faster to get set up and ready for the lift.
And the leather straps look very durable, especially compared to some nylon straps that seem to be common.
It also distributes weight over the hand rather than concentrating around the wrist, which makes for a better lifting experience.
- Durable leather material should last for years
- Easy to get on and off when you need them
- Positive comments about the leather breaking in easily
- Some people have reported pressure points on wrists
Just pay close attention to how you wrap it around your wrist, as you might notice some pressure points.
10 - Spud Weightlifting Straps (Best Durable Cotton)
The final one of our top 10 best lifting straps is this Spud weightlifting strap that has many user reviews that they might last for years of heavy weights lifting.
According to several customers, it's the most durable brand they've encountered that won't tear, and the secure grip is very powerful even with heavier sets.
However, some have mentioned that the straps are initially slick and rigid, but become more flexible after the second or third washing.
Moreover, we couldn’t find any stretch in them, which should also give you more confidence during every lift.
- Well designed stitching may make them suitable for heavy weightlifting
- Positive comments that they don’t seem to stretch or wear down
- Easy to keep clean with the rest of your gym gear
- Some reviews said they could be a bit wider for more support
We did receive some feedback from a few powerlifters who said they prefer a wider strap when lifting weights over 300 pounds.
Why Should You Use Lifting Straps?
Lifting straps boost grip strength, letting athletes lift heavier. They're popular in strength training across various sports. They give you that extra grip to lift more than your bare hands can manage.
Whether you're a weekend gym-goer or an Olympic pro, the right lifting straps can supercharge your workouts. They also reduce fatigue and injury risks by ensuring your weights don't slip.
But there's a catch. While your back and lats might be strong, your hand grip is often the weak link.
Rely too much on straps, and your grip could get even weaker.
So, if you're all about using the best lifting straps, don't forget to throw in some grip-strengthening exercises. Think fist pushups, hanging tight on a pull-up bar, or giving those barbells a real squeeze.
Injury Prevention and Recovery
Lifting weights without proper form or equipment leads to injuries. However, these four recommendations minimize risks:
- Proper Form
- Rest and Recovery
- Use of Equipment
Hand Health and Lifting
Follow the next four suggestions to ensure hand health and improve your lifting experience:
- Protection: Lifting straps mitigate dermal abrasions and calluses, preventing potential skin tears.
- Moisturization: Regular hydration counters epidermal dryness, ensuring skin elasticity and reducing micro tears.
- Stretching: Systematic stretching of the phalanges and wrists alleviates muscular tension and promotes flexibility.
- Strength Training: Specialized grip-enhancing exercises augment hand strength and optimize grip stability.
These are the four key features you have to pay attention to when making your buying decision.
1. Don’t Ignore The Material
Choosing high-quality cotton or leather material will pretty much always trump products using some synthetic materials .
First of all, they tend to last a lot longer. But they should also improve your grip on the bar even during the heaviest lifts you attempt.
In essence, the materials used to manufacture your products may have a significant impact on their functionality. Once you've found the optimal material, such as neoprene padding, it may be able to improve the efficiency of your product.
Equipment for your home gym:
2. Pick The Right Size
Some powerlifting straps allow you to adjust the size as needed. But with figure 8 lifting straps, you’ll need to do a bit of measuring to get the fit right.
“If you're going to lift things, your wrists are going to be involved. This is something that really needs to hit home if you're new to training, but also something that should be maintained and improved as you progress – especially if you can move really heavy loads.”
- Tom Morrison, Writer at T-Nation.com.
You also need to make sure that a strap that wraps around the bar is long enough to wrap multiple times for added grip, stability, and wrist support.
3. Check The Durability
Choosing heavy-duty materials with multiple layers of stitching will go a long way towards having straps that will last for years.
This is more important if you tend to do a lot of very heavy lifts and other powerlifting exercises compared to a bench press where there might be less force pulling on the strap.
Essentially, less durable products are more prone to immediate wear and tear, which means additional replacement costs, making them more expensive.
Choosing the most durable lifting straps may also benefit the environment by conserving resources and reducing waste.
4. Choose Your Preferred Design
The most common designs are single loop and figure 8 lifting straps.
To be honest, after half an hour of a heated debate among our team, we couldn’t figure out a way to say whether one or the other is better.
Try to use straps of both designs to see which ones might suit you best.
Alternatively, if neither of these designs fit you, you can always try Warm Body Cold Mind lifting tape. The thumb tape was designed by the Olympic Champion O. Torokhtiy, and it has pretty impressive results when it comes to protecting the palms and thumbs.
This thumb tape is claimed to be extra sticky, staying on even during the most intense workouts. It’ll wrap around your thumbs, palms, and wrists with ease.
It may be a good idea to give this tape a try to see if it works better for you.
Are Lifting Straps Worth It?
Yes, lifting straps are worth it, even if you’re not aiming to become an Olympic powerlifter. Using durable lifting straps regularly may help protect and strengthen your wrist joint.
How Tight Should Lifting Straps Be?
Lifting straps should be tight enough to support your wrist but not so much that it cuts off circulation. This should leave plenty of room for personal preference without risking injuries.
What Is the Difference Between Wrist Wraps and Lifting Wrist Straps?
The main difference between wrist wraps and lifting wrist straps is that the latter aims to provide extra grip while lifting. Wraps help reduce flex in the joint to keep it in a more neutral position.
Are Cotton Lifting Straps Good?
Yes, cotton lifting straps are good for providing additional grip, especially for beginners. It can also feel more comfortable to use than other materials. However, the material is naturally stretchy, significantly reducing grip strength over time.
The Best Lifting Straps We Would Recommend Is...
We let our clients vote on this, and the overwhelming majority favored the Grip Power Cobra as the best lifting straps overall.
They seem to be the easiest to get set up with, and the materials and features tend to give you a much better grip.
Its figure 8 lifting straps with additional heavy duty stitching make excellent training companions, ensuring a solid, comfortable grip while allowing you to concentrate on performing proper lifts, shrugs, pushes, and pulls.
With the added confidence in your grip, you should be able to add some more plates to the bar and aim for a new personal best.
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