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Did you know that lifting straps are among the most popular weightlifting accessories? These essential tools provide grip support and wrist stability, allowing weightlifters to push their limits and achieve greater gains. When it comes to lifting straps, there are two main contenders: figure 8 straps and traditional straps. In this article, I will compare these two options to determine which is better for your fitness routine. By understanding their design, grip implications, and selecting the right strap for your workout, you can make an informed decision that maximizes your strength training journey.

Key Takeaways:

  • Figure 8 and traditional lifting straps are both popular weightlifting gear.
  • Figure 8 straps feature a unique design that enhances grip strength, while traditional straps offer greater functionality and freedom of movement.
  • The choice between figure 8 and traditional lifting straps depends on your specific exercise needs and preferences.
  • The material used in lifting straps, such as nylon, leather, or canvas, impacts their durability and performance.
  • Different exercises benefit from the use of specific lifting straps, with figure 8 straps being ideal for deadlifts and traditional straps being suitable for Olympic lifts.

Understanding the Design: The Basics of Lifting Straps

When it comes to weightlifting equipment, understanding the design of lifting straps is crucial in determining their effectiveness in improving grip support and wrist stability during workouts. In this section, we will delve into the key aspects of figure 8 lifting straps and traditional lifting straps, shedding light on their unique features and benefits.

Figure 8 Lifting Straps:

Figure 8 lifting straps feature a distinctive shape that sets them apart from traditional straps. These straps allow you to slide your hand through an upper loop, wrap it around the bar, and grip the lower half of the strap. This unique design creates a strong and secure grip, providing excellent support for exercises like deadlifts.

Traditional Lifting Straps:

On the other hand, traditional lifting straps are closed-loop straps that wrap around both the bar and your hand. This design offers support and stability, ensuring a secure connection between your hand and the weight. Traditional straps are versatile and suitable for various lifting exercises, providing reliable grip support and wrist stability.

Understanding the design of lifting straps, whether they are figure 8 straps or traditional straps, is essential in choosing the right strap for your lifting routine. Each type of strap offers distinct advantages and caters to different workout preferences and requirements. By considering their design features, you can make an informed decision that enhances your lifting performance and overall workout experience.

The Implications of Grip: Figure 8 vs. Traditional Lifting Straps

Grip is an essential factor to consider when comparing figure 8 and traditional lifting straps. Figure 8 straps offer a thick and sturdy grip, providing superior grip strength and safety during exercises like deadlifts. The figure 8 design allows for a more secure connection between your hand and the bar. On the other hand, traditional lifting straps may offer less grip strength but provide greater functionality and freedom of movement, making them suitable for exercises that require power and speed. The implications of grip vary between these two types of lifting straps, affecting their performance and usability in different workouts.

Grip comfort is a crucial consideration when selecting lifting straps. Figure 8 straps, with their thick and sturdy grip, may offer more comfort and support during heavy lifts. The secure connection between your hand and the bar ensures a controlled and confident grip, reducing the risk of slippage and potential injury.

Traditional lifting straps, although they may provide less grip strength, offer greater functionality and freedom of movement. This can enhance the comfort level during exercises that require power and speed, allowing for a more natural range of motion.

Weightlifting grip aids, such as chalk and liquid grip, can further enhance the grip quality and comfort when using lifting straps. Applying these aids can improve the overall effectiveness of both figure 8 and traditional straps, ensuring a secure and comfortable grip during your workouts.

When deciding between figure 8 and traditional lifting straps, it’s important to consider your personal preference, the type of exercises you perform, and the level of grip strength and comfort you require. By assessing these factors, you can choose the lifting straps that best suit your individual needs and maximize your performance in the gym.

Choosing the Right Strap for Your Workout

To select the ideal lifting strap for your workout, it is crucial to consider your specific lifting needs and preferences. Different exercises require different types of straps to maximize performance and safety. In this section, I will outline some key factors to help you determine the most suitable lifting strap for your workout routine.

  1. Determine Your Lifting Goals: Before choosing a lifting strap, it is important to identify your lifting goals. Are you focusing on strength training, powerlifting, bodybuilding, or general fitness? Understanding your goals will help you select a strap that aligns with your specific workout needs.
  2. Consider the Exercises You Perform: Different lifting exercises require different types of grip support. For exercises such as deadlifts, shrugs, or rows, figure 8 lifting straps are ideal. These straps provide a secure grip and excellent wrist stability during heavy lifts. On the other hand, for exercises that involve explosive movements or require quick release, like Olympic lifts, traditional lifting straps may be preferable as they allow for faster strap release.
  3. Evaluate Your Grip Strength: If you have weaker grip strength, or if you are lifting heavy weights where grip fatigue may become an issue, figure 8 lifting straps can provide significant support. The design of figure 8 straps allows for a stronger connection between your hand and the bar, enhancing grip strength and reducing the risk of dropping weights due to fatigue.
  4. Consider Your Personal Comfort: Comfort is an important factor when determining the right lifting strap for your workout. Some lifters may find figure 8 straps more comfortable due to the way they distribute pressure over the hand and wrist. Alternatively, traditional lifting straps provide a more versatile grip, allowing for easier adjustments and greater hand freedom during exercises.

Material Matters: Composition and Durability

The material used in lifting straps plays a crucial role in determining their durability and overall performance. When considering which lifting straps to purchase, it’s essential to understand the characteristics and benefits of different strap materials. This section will explore the three commonly used materials for lifting straps: nylon, leather, and canvas.

Nylon, Leather, and Canvas: A Comparison

Let’s take a closer look at each material:

  1. Nylon Straps: Nylon straps are lightweight, yet incredibly durable, making them a popular choice among weightlifters. They offer excellent strength and resistance to wear and tear, ensuring longevity even with heavy use. Nylon straps are known for their flexibility, allowing for easy and comfortable adjustments during workouts.
  2. Leather Straps: Leather straps provide a more traditional feel and are favored by many weightlifters for their excellent grip. Leather has a natural tackiness that enhances grip strength and control. While leather straps may require a break-in period to soften and mold to your hands, they offer unparalleled durability and can withstand rigorous use.
  3. Canvas Straps: Canvas straps are a cost-effective option for weightlifters. They are known for their affordability and versatility. However, compared to nylon and leather, canvas straps may not be as durable, particularly for heavy lifting or prolonged use. Nonetheless, they are a viable option for casual lifters or those on a budget.

When choosing between nylon, leather, and canvas lifting straps, consider factors such as your lifting routine, desired level of grip, and budget. Each material offers unique advantages and considerations that can impact the lifespan and performance of the straps.

Impact of Material Choice on Lifespan and Performance

The choice of material for lifting straps can have a significant impact on their overall lifespan and performance. Here’s a summary of the key factors to consider:

LeatherHighly durableExcellentHigher
CanvasLess durableFairLow

As shown in the table above, nylon and leather straps generally offer greater durability and grip compared to canvas straps. However, it’s important to note that the cost varies among these materials. Leather straps tend to be higher in price due to their superior quality and durability.

When selecting lifting straps, consider your lifting intensity, frequency, and personal preferences. Investing in high-quality straps made from durable materials can ensure they withstand rigorous workouts and provide optimal grip and support.

Application in the Gym: Which Exercises Benefit Most?

Different exercises benefit from the use of lifting straps in varying ways. Figure 8 straps and traditional straps each have their advantages in specific exercises, allowing weightlifters to maximize their performance and achieve their fitness goals. Understanding the benefits and advantages of each type of strap for different exercises will help you make an informed choice and optimize your workout routine.

For exercises like deadlifts, figure 8 lifting straps are highly recommended. Deadlifts rely heavily on grip strength and control, especially when lifting heavy weights. The figure 8 design of these straps provides a secure and tight grip, thereby significantly enhancing your ability to lift heavy loads. By using figure 8 straps during deadlifts, you can experience increased confidence, reduced grip fatigue, and potentially lift heavier weights.

On the other hand, traditional lifting straps are often more advantageous for exercises that require power and speed, such as Olympic lifts. Traditional straps provide stability and support, allowing you to focus on generating explosive force and executing the lifts with precision. By using traditional straps during Olympic lifts, you can improve your performance by maintaining a secure grip on the bar, reducing the risk of slippage, and achieving greater control during complex movements.

Understanding the Advantages of Each Type of Lifting Strap

Understanding the advantages of each type of lifting strap for specific exercises will help you determine which type is most suitable for your workout routine.

It’s important to note that while figure 8 straps excel in deadlifts and traditional straps shine in Olympic lifts, both types of lifting straps can still provide benefits in other exercises. For example, figure 8 straps can also be used effectively in exercises like rows and pull-ups, where grip strength plays a significant role. Similarly, traditional straps can be beneficial in exercises like shrugs and heavy barbell presses, where a secure grip is crucial for maintaining proper form and executing the movement safely.

In conclusion, selecting the appropriate lifting strap for each exercise is essential for maximizing your performance and achieving your fitness goals. By understanding the advantages of figure 8 straps for deadlifts and traditional straps for Olympic lifts, you can make an informed decision and ensure that you have the right lifting straps for each exercise in your workout routine.

Comfort and Convenience: A Look at Fit and Usage

When it comes to lifting straps, comfort and convenience are crucial factors to consider. The fit of the straps and their flexibility play a significant role in enhancing your workout experience. Evaluating these aspects will help you find the right lifting strap that suits your needs.

Evaluating Straps Based on Thickness and Flexibility

The thickness and flexibility of lifting straps can greatly impact their comfort and usability. Thicker straps provide a more substantial grip and can distribute the weight more evenly across your hand, reducing discomfort and strain. On the other hand, thinner straps offer greater dexterity and flexibility, allowing for a more natural feel during movements.

Consider the nature of your workouts and personal preferences when evaluating strap thickness and flexibility. If you prioritize a secure grip and additional support, opting for thicker straps might be the ideal choice. Alternatively, if freedom of movement and flexibility are your priorities, thinner straps may be more suitable.

User Experiences: What Lifters Say About Comfort

Listening to the experiences of other lifters can provide valuable insights into the comfort levels of figure 8 straps compared to traditional straps. Many lifters have shared their positive experiences with figure 8 straps, noting the comfortable fit and superior grip they provide. These straps are particularly favored for exercises like deadlifts, where a secure grip is essential.

Traditional lifting straps also have their proponents who appreciate their simplicity and versatility. While they may not offer the same level of comfort and support as figure 8 straps, traditional straps are still widely used and trusted by many lifters.

Ultimately, the comfort of lifting straps is a subjective preference that varies from person to person. Try out different types of straps to find the one that feels the most comfortable and suits your lifting style.

The Brand Factor: Trusted Names in Weightlifting Gear

When it comes to weightlifting gear, there are reputable lifting strap brands that have established themselves as leaders in the industry. These brands not only offer quality products but also have a strong reputation for performance and durability.

Rogue, SBD, and Gunsmith: A Dive into Quality and Reputation

Rogue is known for its wide range of lifting straps, providing options for different lifting styles and needs. Their lifting straps are designed with high-quality materials to ensure durability and reliable performance during intense workouts. With a focus on innovation and customer satisfaction, Rogue has built a solid reputation in the weightlifting community.

SBD is another esteemed brand that offers lifting straps crafted with precision and attention to detail. SBD aims to provide lifting gear that not only enhances performance but also prioritizes safety. Their lifting straps are favored by professional athletes and powerlifters for their outstanding grip and long-lasting durability.

Gunsmith is a brand that has earned recognition for its commitment to quality and design. Their lifting straps are known for their versatility and ability to withstand heavy loads. With a focus on ergonomics and functionality, Gunsmith lifting straps are a popular choice among weightlifters seeking reliable and well-designed gear.

Uncovering Underdogs: Genghis Fitness, Dmoose, Gymreapers

While Rogue, SBD, and Gunsmith dominate the lifting strap market, there are also lesser-known brands that offer excellent options for weightlifters. Genghis Fitness, Dmoose, and Gymreapers may not have the same level of recognition, but they provide high-quality lifting straps that are worth considering.

Genghis Fitness offers lifting straps that are designed with durability and comfort in mind. Their straps are made from premium materials to ensure longevity and reliable performance. With a focus on customer satisfaction, Genghis Fitness has gained a loyal following among weightlifters looking for value and quality.

Dmoose is a brand that prides itself on producing lifting straps that combine performance and affordability. Their lifting straps are crafted with attention to detail and offer a secure grip during heavy lifts. Dmoose aims to provide weightlifters with reliable gear that enhances their workout experience without breaking the bank.

Gymreapers is a brand that understands the needs of weightlifters and creates lifting straps that deliver on performance and durability. Their straps are designed to provide excellent grip strength and support, allowing weightlifters to focus on their lifts without worrying about their grip. Gymreapers is a trusted name among weightlifters looking for top-quality lifting straps.

Maximizing Safety and Performance: Tips for Strap Use

Proper usage of lifting straps is essential for maximizing safety and performance during workouts. To ensure you get the most out of your lifting straps while minimizing the risk of injuries, follow these recommended techniques:

  1. Choose the right strap for your exercise: Different exercises may require different types of lifting straps. Determine whether figure 8 straps or traditional straps are most suitable for your workout routine.
  2. Secure the straps properly: Before lifting, make sure the straps are securely wrapped around the bar and your hand. This will provide a stable and secure grip.
  3. Adjust for comfort and support: Take the time to properly adjust the straps to ensure they fit snugly and comfortably. This will help minimize the risk of discomfort or slippage during your lifts.
  4. Maintain proper form: Lifting straps are designed to enhance your grip, but they should not compensate for weak muscle groups. Keep your form in check and focus on building strength to avoid over-reliance on the straps.
  5. Practice gradual progression: If you’re new to using lifting straps, start with lighter weights and gradually increase the load as you become more comfortable with the straps. This will allow your grip strength to develop naturally.
  6. Inspect for wear and tear: Regularly check your lifting straps for any signs of damage or wear. Replace straps that have become frayed or weakened to maintain optimal safety.

By following these recommended techniques, you can prevent injuries, improve your lifting performance, and make the most out of your lifting straps.


In conclusion, when choosing between figure 8 lifting straps and traditional lifting straps, there are several factors to consider to make the best decision for your weightlifting needs. Your lifting goals, exercise preferences, and personal comfort are all important considerations.

Both figure 8 and traditional lifting straps offer unique benefits that can enhance your weightlifting experience. Figure 8 lifting straps provide a secure and strong grip, making them ideal for exercises like deadlifts that require a firm hold on heavy weights. On the other hand, traditional lifting straps offer greater functionality and freedom of movement, making them more suitable for exercises that demand power and speed, such as Olympic lifts.

To select the most appropriate lifting strap for your workout routine, it is crucial to understand the design, grip implications, and material considerations of each type. Consider your specific requirements and try out different straps to determine the best fit. Some weightlifters may find that a combination of both figure 8 and traditional straps works well for their varying needs.

Remember, the primary goal of using lifting straps is to improve your grip and protect your wrists during heavy lifts. By choosing the right strap, you can enhance your performance, reduce the risk of injuries, and focus on achieving your desired results in the gym.

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