Running with a weighted vest could lead to injury.
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Weighted vests temporarily increase your bodyweight to make your workouts more demanding. Close fitting and usually adjustable to suit your current level of fitness, a weighted vest can be worn when you walk or run, perform exercises such as pushups and lunges, or participate in group exercise classes like step aerobics. While weighted vests will make your workout more demanding, they may also cause problems.
Weighted vests need to fit snugly. If your vest moves around too much, it can be disconcerting -- especially if you are performing jumping or bending exercises. Weighted vests use velcro, elastic or straps to secure them in place, though, and a snug-fitting vest can feel restrictive and even uncomfortable. The weights in the vest are usually made of metal, and these can dig into you when you bend your torso or lie on your front or back. Some vests are quite long, and the bottom of the vest may rub the top of your thighs during your workout. For that reason, shorter exercisers should seek out short-bodied vests.
Normally made of tough nylon, canvas or cordura, weighted vests are usually quite thick and cover your entire torso. Exercise alone can leave you hot and sweaty, but wearing a weighted vest can make even relatively light exercise a very steamy affair and could lead to overheating and dehydration. Avoid dehydration by consuming plenty of water before, during and after your workouts and not exercising when the temperatures soar. If you do exercise outdoors in the heat, take periodic breaks in the shade.
Running and jumping-type activities are high-impact. That is to say, at some point both of your feet are off the floor. As what goes up must come down, this means that there is a lot of impact that has to be absorbed on landing. This impact is potentially injurious and is transmitted through your feet, ankles, knees, hips and spine. Wearing a weighted vest when running or jumping significantly increases the amount of force you will experience on landing. While wearing a weighted vest may result in a more challenging workout, the risk of significant impact-related joint injury may outweigh the benefits for some exercisers.
The cost of buying a weighted vest depends on the model chosen, materials used in construction and how much it weighs. As you get stronger, you may find your original purchase becomes too light, so you have to buy either additional weights or a new vest entirely. In all scenarios, buying a weighted vest is a purchase that can prove costly.
Most weighted vests look like paramilitary combat equipment at best and body armor at worse. Worn outside your normal clothes, there is no disguising the fact you are wearing a weighted vest. Wearing a weighted vest in the great outdoors is no real problem, but if you wear your vest at the gym, you may get some puzzled looks from people who think you are wearing a bulletproof vest for your workouts. While not a serious disadvantage, if you care about how you look when you are working out, consider the design of your vest before purchasing.