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, I’ve encountered more than my fair share of lifting straps. I’ve had some rip during a deadlift, and others cause painful blisters.

If you use lifting straps, focus on the following ones that we have put to the test.

Our Top Lifting Straps

1 - Grip Power Cobra Grips (Editor's Choice)

Grip Power Cobra Grips

These figure 8 lifting straps might be the most versatile ones you’ll find.

Not only might they significantly improve your grip strength, but they are fast and easy to get on and off as you need them.

Once you’ve picked the right size for your wrists, there should be no issue with pressure points or friction.

Material:

  • Cotton
Pros
  • Available in 3 size options for better comfort
  • Extra stitching should help with durability
  • Figure 8 straps should make it fast and easy to use
  • Many positive comments about improved grip strength
Cons
  • 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 on your hands.

2 - Harbinger Cotton Lifting Straps

Harbinger Cotton Lifting Straps

The Harbinger padded cotton straps might suit athletes who sometimes feel more pressure or strain on their wrists with heavy loads.

By using padded lifting straps, you might be able to get rid of that strain without causing damage.

And if you’re conscious of matching up your gym gear by color, then you’ll like the choices Harbinger has to offer.

Material:

  • Cotton
Pros
  • Padded lifting straps may reduce pressure on the wrists
  • Positive comments about the heavy-duty stitching
  • Available in different colors to match up with your gym gear
Cons
  • Might be a bit tight fitting for athletes with bigger wrists

Just be aware that if you have a particularly large wrist, then these might feel a bit tight.

3 - Dark Iron Fitness Leather Lifting Straps

Dark Iron Fitness Leather Lifting Straps

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 stitching may make these suitable for lifters who get into the competitive weight ranges.

Material:

  • Leather suede
Pros
  • 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
Cons
  • Leather 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

Grip Power Pads PRO

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 the lifting strap.

Material:

  • Cotton and neoprene
Pros
  • May provide better wrist support with comfortable padding
  • Longer Length may suit athletes lifting heavier weights
  • The silicone lettering seems to provide some added grip
Cons
  • They might be a bit wide for some powerlifters

Just note that these ones are a bit wider than standard, which might not be ideal for all types of lifting.

5 - Anvil Fitness Lifting Straps

Anvil Fitness Lifting Straps

This loop lifting strap should make it a bit easier and faster to wrap around the bar. We also liked the smooth edges, which on other straps might quickly cause blisters or calluses.

The padding may also be thick enough to offer some protection from wrist injuries, which might be helpful if you’ve had some previous sprains.

Material:

  • Cotton
Pros
  • Positive comments about the well-placed padding for fewer pressure points
  • Doesn’t seem to have any uncomfortable edges that might rub
  • Single loop strap makes it easy and fast to adjust
Cons
  • Some people find the strap material is a bit too thick

Athletes looking for a powerlifting strap that isn’t too thick might need to consider a different option.

6 - Nordic Lifting Straps

Nordic Lifting Straps

We love the Nordic weightlifting brand, and we like this one size fits all design as it seems to be fast and easy to get a comfortable grip for lifting or pull-ups.

And these weight lifting straps come in a good choice of color options so you can match them up with your other weight training gear.

Material:

  • Cotton
Pros
  • 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
Cons
  • Might not be suitable for smaller wrist sizes

The only thing we noticed on one of our female clients is that they might not be the most comfortable for anyone with a slim wrist.

7 - Serious Steel Fitness Figure 8 Straps

Serious Steel Fitness Figure 8 Straps

The Serious Steel Fitness Figure 8 Straps are popular with a lot of powerlifters as the design may reduce the chance of slipping or reducing grip.

What we liked is the careful placement of the stitches, which should avoid even small pressure points that could cause sore blisters.

Material:

  • Cotton
Pros
  • Well placed 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
Cons
  • 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 strap position right.

8 - IronMind Lifting Straps

IronMind Lifting Straps

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 and 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.

Material:

  • Cotton
Pros
  • 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
Cons
  • Getting the tightness right doesn’t seem as easy with these straps

We just found that adjusting how tight you want the straps isn’t as easy as other straps on the market.

9 - Stoic Olympic Lifting Wrist Straps

Stoic Olympic Lifting Wrist Straps

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 weightlifting strap design that claims to make it easier and faster to get set up and ready for the lift.

And the leather looks very durable, especially compared to some nylon lifting straps that seem to be common.

Material:

  • Leather
Pros
  • 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
Cons
  • 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

Spud Weightlifting Straps

The final one of our top 10 best lifting straps is this Spud deadlift strap that has many user reviews that they might last for years of heavy lifting.

We couldn’t find any stretch in them, which should also give you more confidence during every lift.

Material:

  • Cotton
Pros
  • 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
Cons
  • 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.

Buyer’s Guide

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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 using some synthetic materials [1].

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.

2. Pick The Right Size

Some powerlifting straps allow you to adjust the size as needed. But with figure 8 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.

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 deadlifts compared to a bench press where there might be less force pulling on the strap.

4. Choose Your Preferred Design

The most common designs are single loop and figure 8.

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.

FAQs

FAQs

Are Lifting Straps Worth It?

Yes, lifting straps are worth it, even if you’re not aiming to become an Olympic powerlifter. Using lifting straps on a regular basis may help protect and strengthen your wrist joint [2].

How Tight Should Lifting Straps Be?

Lifting straps should be tight enough to support your wrist but not so tight 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 Wrist Straps?

The main difference between wrist wraps and wrist straps is that wrist straps aim to provide extra grip while lifting. Wraps tend to help with reducing flex in the joint to keep it in a more neutral position.

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.

They seem to be the easiest to get set up with, and the materials and features tend to give you a much better grip.

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.

Grip Power Cobra Grips

Grip Power Cobra Grips

Our #1 Recommendation

  • Available in 3 size options for better comfort
  • Extra stitching should help with durability
  • Figure 8 straps should make it fast and easy to use
  • Many positive comments about improved grip strength
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