Operating belts and waistpacks provide a technique to carry provides and equipment, comparable to water, snacks, an additional clothes layer, your cellphone, keys, playing cards, cash, and generally even mountain climbing poles, in a hyper-compact setup round your waist. The perfect operating belt will match comfortably, keep nonetheless whenever you run, and have simply accessible pockets for the gadgets you want.
Starting from minimalist mini-belts simply sufficiently big for a smartphone to ultramarathon-worthy operating hydration waistpacks that may absolutely substitute for a vest, the operating belt and waistpack market is so giant and various that it may be exhausting to resolve what you would possibly want. iRunFar’s gear testing crew searched far and large and logged a whole lot of miles in a number of dozen merchandise to convey you one of the best operating belts and waistpacks right this moment. Our high picks match into three basic classes: tube-style belts, mini-belts, and bigger waistpacks constructed for carrying hydration.
You’ll be able to be taught extra about selecting one of the best operating belt by leaping to our how-to-choose part. We additionally reply probably the most incessantly requested questions about operating belts and waistpacks under and describe our testing methodology for this information.
Greatest Operating Belts
- Numerous storage
- Open pocket configuration permits you to retailer stuff precisely the place you need to
- Stretchy and secure
- You’ll be able to really feel poles on the decrease again when held with bands
- Can scrunch up relying on physique kind
It’s been in the marketplace for years, and lots of manufacturers have tried their hand at an identical tube-style operating belt, but the Bare Operating Band stays one of the best operating belt of its form.
The stretchy, breathable tube-style operating waistpack has three deep pockets circling your complete belt, with the biggest one within the again sufficiently big to suit even a full-size mushy flask. The Bare Operating Band has giant elastic bands for carrying collapsible operating poles, which is handy, although you would possibly be capable of really feel them within the small of your again. There are two bungee toggles for attaching a race bib and an inner key clip, all on the entrance of the belt.
This waistpack has probably the most exact match of all of the tube-style choices, because of its 12 obtainable sizes. The Bare web site has a dimension chart, and a number of testers discovered the belts ran true to the marketed sizes. Notably, some however not all testers discovered that the tall peak of the band precipitated it to scrunch up a bit across the stomach, particularly in the event that they weren’t carrying a lot contained in the belt.
Precise weight: 2.3 ounces (67 grams) | Configuration: Three giant top-loading pockets encircling the belt
- It stays placed on the waist and has little or no bounce
- Stable and cozy system for carrying poles
The Salomon Sense Professional operating belt is a good addition to this class from a model with wonderful hydration packs. We discovered that it stays put with out scrunching up across the waist higher than the remainder of the tube-style operating belts — we predict it’s because it has a barely smaller diameter on the high in comparison with the underside.
There are two giant and two small pockets between the entrance and sides, and adjustable bungee cords within the again make it simple to suit various-sized poles and guarantee they don’t slip. Two bits of froth padding within the waistbelt forestall the poles from urgent in your decrease again, which is a pleasant contact. Observe which you could additionally use these exterior bungees to securely carry an additional layer like a rain or wind jacket.
The biggest pocket on the again reserves area for a full-size mushy flask. The entrance pocket has a fold-over opening, which makes carrying your cellphone really feel safe. It takes a bit to get used to working this pocket on the run, however when you do, it’s easy to entry your cellphone for a fast picture or textual content message. The opposite three pockets open from the highest.
Precise weight: 2 ounces (57 grams) | Configuration: One giant and two small top-loading pockets on the again and sides; one giant pocket with a fold-over opening on the entrance
- Carries a hard-sided water bottle higher than some other waistpack we examined
- Included water bottle slips out and in simply
- No bounce
- Restricted storage past carrying water
- It doesn’t are available in a number of sizes to accommodate the widest array of physique varieties
- No key clip
With regards to operating waistpacks with a bit extra heft, the Nathan Peak Hydration Waist Pak sits on the high of our listing. This pack shines in relation to carrying water in its included hard-sided Nathan Velocity Draw Flask with the push/pull Race Cap, which holds 535 milliliters (18 ounces) of liquid.
The included flask is ergonomically formed and flat on one facet, permitting it to sit down properly towards the small of your again. Additionally, its curved sides and bump on the outer face make it comfy for palms of many sizes to carry. Lastly, pulling out and changing the flask in its designated holster whereas operating feels simple and easy.
This pack presents only one zippered pocket that wraps across the left again facet for storage. It’s sufficiently big in your cellphone, key, and a few snacks. To the best facet of the water bottle holster is an adjustable bungee wire that permits you to stow a small jacket, hat, or gloves. Total, the storage is fairly minimal.
This operating belt has no bounce — none in any respect — courtesy of its large webbing and total form meant to fill a lot of the floor space on the small of your again. Certainly one of our testers even discovered the large webbing to be overkill for this small pack, although others appreciated it for the soundness it presents.
This single-size belt connects on the entrance with a buckle and adjusts to suit most physique sizes. And in case you’re questioning, a number of different hard-sided water bottles do match into this waistpack, however not with the precision match of the included Nathan Velocity Draw Flask.
Precise weight: 6.3 ounces with the included hard-sided water bottle (178 grams) | Configuration: Water bottle holster and one zippered pocket on the again
- Carries a hard-sided water bottle very effectively
- It sits very solidly on the physique with no bounce
- Larger-than-it-seems pocket within the entrance
- Excessive value
- It doesn’t are available in a number of sizes to accommodate the widest array of physique varieties
One other nice waistpack for carrying a hard-sided water bottle is the UltrAspire Synaptic 2.0 Waist Pack. It’s a hefty one, weighing practically half a pound, making it the heaviest waistpack on this information. Whereas this pack is heavier than some others, UltrAspire prioritized consolation and ergonomic match. The waistpack sits flush towards your again and abdomen, making bouncing practically not possible.
This was the favourite bottle-carrying pack of iRunFar’s Meghan Hicks, the unique creator of this information: “There’s no bounce, and it’s fairly comfy … there’s no banging of the bottle on the decrease again, nothing digs into my center. It’s important to pull the bottle fairly exhausting to get it out, however you get used to it.”
The zippered again pocket doesn’t maintain as a lot as we’d like, however the entrance pocket, which opens on the high, held sufficient vitamin for a four-hour run and will have held much more. If you wish to carry a cellphone, you’ll must preserve it within the entrance pocket. There’s a key clip within the again pocket.
Not like many different operating belts on this information configured for carrying poles on the again, this one has bungee cords within the entrance for poles or additional clothes.
The waistpack’s one-size-fits-most system adjusts extensively to supply a secure match for a lot of physique varieties. Although it really works nice, all of our check crew discovered the massive metallic buckle to be far overbuilt for this pack’s wants. That stated, we actually just like the included UltrAspire UltraFlask 550 Hybrid Bottle — it’s probably not mushy and probably not exhausting, nevertheless it’s fairly versatile and lighter than others.
Precise weight: 7.9 ounces with the included water bottle (225 grams) | Configuration: Water bottle holster and one small zippered pocket on the again; one giant top-loading pocket on the entrance
- Nice value
- Number of pockets
- Many colours and a large dimension vary
- Can journey up for some ladies
- The belt can get a little bit heat due to a number of layers of fabric, together with water resistant materials in some components
- The cellphone pocket is tight, so it’s tough to take away and change it on the transfer
The Nathan Zipster Lite is finest for a run the place you don’t want to hold water round your waist. If you wish to go minimal, carry your cellphone, key, and maybe one snack, this operating belt is the one to make use of.
This belt is available in all kinds of colours and sizes. With varied pockets, it weighs about as a lot as tube-style operating belts with bigger carrying capacities. Two pockets on the perimeters fold over to shut, and the back and front have zippers and water resistant materials inside. The zippered pockets present a decent match for a smartphone, nevertheless it works. A feminine tester did discover some motion with the waistbelt driving up when sized in response to Nathan’s sizing chart, so she recommends ladies dimension down if they’re on the cusp of two sizes.
Whereas the waterproof pockets are a pleasant contact, one in all our testers famous this made the belt really feel too heat in hotter climate. That stated, our testers beloved this mini-belt for cooler climate operating once they needed to run hands-free however carry one or two necessities.
Precise weight: 2.2 ounces (63 grams) | Configuration: Two giant zippered pockets on the back and front; two fold-over pockets on the perimeters
- Minimal bounce
- Simple to tackle and off
- Wonderful value
- Thick materials will get sweaty in hotter climate
- No key clip
The Nathan 5K Waist Belt is the operating belt to make use of for those who’re searching for no-bounce minimalism. The again sits flush and securely towards the physique, presents some wonderful reflective element for these early-morning or night time runs, and the entrance closes simply with a click on of the plastic buckle. Certainly one of our testers saved a cellphone and an ultralight wind jacket within the pack, which is greater than we anticipated it to hold, and it didn’t bounce.
The black model has strap keepers for the adjustable straps, whereas the opposite colours don’t, which is a bummer however a problem we mounted by trimming extra belt materials. Some testers stated they received fairly heat carrying it, presumably due to the non-breathable neoprene utilized in its development, the identical materials utilized in wetsuits. That stated, it’s nice for shoulder season whenever you begin chilly and must stash gloves and a headlamp because the day warms up. Whereas it isn’t probably the most revolutionary waistpack, it’s a wonderful alternative for an reasonably priced and easy-to-use belt.
Precise weight: 3.5 ounces (100 grams) | Configuration: One giant and one small zippered pocket on the again
- It’s tremendous simple to entry and stow the included mushy flask
- No hanging straps because of Velcro closure
- No bounce and a really comfy journey
- You should add on Final Course Journey Pocket if you’d like in depth storage along with carrying water
- Velcro catches on some clothes supplies and gloves
- Excessive value
For a traditional-style waistpack that’s simply in a position to carry a full-size mushy flask, the Final Course Race Belt is ideal. This belt closes within the entrance with a Velcro layover relatively than a buckle clasp, which means no additional strap materials hangs over the facet.
There are three pockets on this waistpack. A tiny pocket on the entrance proper facet is supposed to carry your key. There are two pockets on the again. The primary pocket is for carrying a mushy flask that hundreds from the highest and has a snap closure, and the interior zipper pocket is the place you’ll be able to securely maintain your cellphone or different gadgets. That inner zipper pocket additionally has a key clip. Lastly, adjustable bungee cords on the again will let you connect poles or an additional layer, which can be utilized comfortably when carrying a mushy flask. Do you have to need extra storage than what’s right here, this waistbelt is made to pair with the Final Course Journey Pocket, which might connect to the entrance.
This operating belt is made to hold mushy flasks, so in contrast to different waistpacks, the place the mushy flask can stretch the mesh or bounce round a bit, the Final Course Race Belt design is such that the mushy flask within the again sits properly, slides in and out simply, and doesn’t bounce. Dealing with mushy flasks generally is a wiggly expertise, and this belt presents a streamlined answer. On that be aware, this waistpack comes with one Final Course Physique Bottle II 500-milliliter mushy flask.
Precise weight: 3.6 ounces with the included mushy flask (104 grams) | Configuration: One giant top-loading pocket and one zippered pocket on the again; one tiny Velcro pocket on the entrance
- Huge carrying capability
- There isn’t any bounce because it sits low and safe on the again
- The best value of any waistpack on this information
- Velcro catches on some clothes supplies and gloves
Final Course at all times leads the sector with revolutionary gear-carrying instruments, and the Final Course Extremely Belt is not any totally different. That is the most costly operating belt of the bunch, nevertheless it capabilities way more like an precise operating vest than its opponents.
It has the biggest carrying capability of any belt on this listing, in a position to match two full mushy flasks at angles on the decrease again in devoted pockets with bungee closure tops. The waistpack contains two of the Final Course Physique Bottle II 500-milliliter mushy flasks. Observe that these hydration pockets retailer different gear effectively for those who’re not carrying two mushy flasks.
A zippered pocket between the bottles can suit your cellphone, a wind jacket, snacks, and the rest you may want, although some testers acknowledged they struggled to get the biggest of telephones inside when carrying two full mushy flasks. Inside this zippered pocket, a hidden pocket with a hook-and-loop closure helps you to securely stow a key and bank cards. Lastly, an adjustable bungee wire overlays the zipper pocket to carry an additional layer.
Just like the Final Course Race Belt above, this one has a tiny pocket simply in your key with a Velcro closure within the entrance. You’ll be able to pair this waistbelt with the Journey Pocket for much more storage.
We took this waistpack on an all-day journey, carrying one mushy flask, operating gas for seven hours out, a rain jacket, gloves, water filter, cellphone, and a small headlamp. In impact, it comfortably and simply held all we’d have carried in a hydration pack.
Precise weight: 5.3 ounces with the 2 included mushy flasks (150 grams) | Configuration: Two mushy flask holsters, one giant zippered pocket, and one small Velcro pocket on the again; one tiny Velcro pocket on the entrance
- The curved form matches ergonomically on the hips
- The zippered pocket permits safe storage for keys, playing cards, and trash
- Greatest value within the tube-style operating belt class
- It might bunch up if not carrying a lot within the pockets
The UltrAspire Fitted Race Belt 2.0 innovates within the tube-style operating belt class with a form that’s taller within the entrance and shorter within the again, because of curves on the underside fringe of the waistpack.
This belt has three giant pockets that can maintain your cellphone, hydration, vitamin, and the rest you could need to carry. One of many pockets closes with a vertical zipper, which is helpful if you wish to be certain that your keys don’t fall out, whereas the opposite two open on the high.
Bungee cords on the again securely carry your poles or an additional layer of clothes. The biggest pocket on the entrance will comfortably maintain a full-size mushy flask. There are two bungee toggles with which to connect your bib for those who put on this belt in a race. Whereas this can be a good design for an on a regular basis operating belt and is obtainable at an awesome worth, some testers seen that it bunched up in the event that they weren’t carrying a lot.
Precise weight: 2.4 ounces (68 grams) | Configuration: Two giant top-loading pockets and one pocket with a vertical zipper encircling the belt
- Practical design
- Multiply carry configurations
- Nice worth
- It isn’t particularly designed for carrying hydration
- No simple technique to carry operating poles
A singular design that’s one in all a sort amongst operating belts, the Janji Multipass Sling packs loads of performance into a comparatively light-weight and technical design. This part-sling, part-belt design could be worn a number of methods and has loads of functions exterior of operating. It has one major pocket on the skin that zips closed and might maintain something from a mushy flask to snacks, a jacket, or gloves. Inside this principal pocket, you’ll additionally discover a key clip and a smaller mesh pocket completely sized for playing cards or money. Behind this bigger major pocket is one other zippered pocket that sits towards the physique and has loads of room for a number of extra snacks or your cellphone. A pass-through pocket for stashing a light-weight jacket is between these two pockets. Nevertheless, it’s not fairly sufficiently big to simply match poles.
This belt is constructed with technical, water resistant cloth and simply sufficient light-weight, perforated foam to offer it a little bit construction with out making it really feel heavy and scorching. Additionally, the fabric on the again is a breathable mesh, which works along with the froth to permit airflow between the pack and your physique.
All that stated, what units this pack aside is which you could put on it both as a waistpack or as a sling round your shoulders. In case you go for the latter, a small hidden strap within the again zippered pocket pulls out and clips to the principle strap for added stability (and no bouncing). Each configurations are comfy, relying in your exercise. We appreciated the standard waistpack for operating and the sling for bike commuting. On that be aware, this can be a extremely purposeful and technical pack, nevertheless it’s finest for commuting, touring, and basic on-the-go actions — it wouldn’t be our first choose, say, in a race or future the place you’re primarily carrying gas and hydration.
Precise weight: 6.5 ounces (183 grams) | Configuration: Two giant zippered pockets, one with an inner mesh pocket and key ring, and one extra pass-through pocket for a light-weight windbreaker or rain jacket
Evaluating the Greatest Operating Belts
Purchaser’s Information: Find out how to Select a Operating Belt
Selecting From the Numerous Types
The perfect operating belts and waistpacks appear to be divided into three basic classes:
- Tube-style belts: Ultralight, minimalistic, and adaptable to what you’d like to hold in them
- Mini-belts: Small waistpacks meant solely to carry your keys, card, and cellphone
- Bigger waistpacks constructed round carrying particular water bottles: Apart from hydration, these can moreover maintain snacks, additional layers, and extra
The model you select relies on your run. For a fast three miles across the block with shorts that don’t have pockets to hold your keys, the Nathan Zipster Lite will do the trick. A path marathon with a number of support stations for refilling water bottles or a distant high-altitude journey the place you’re primarily self-reliant will every warrant a distinct model of operating belt.
The model you employ can be a matter of private choice and luxury. For instance, one of the best operating belt for a minimalist is totally different than for somebody who likes to drink out of hard-sided water bottles. No matter you need, this information has a waistpack for you.
Many individuals select operating belts and waistpacks over hydration packs as a result of they place extra weight on the hips and waist relatively than the shoulders, and so they additionally cut back protection of your chest and again for higher air flow and decrease threat of chafing.
Every runner’s physique kind will partly dictate one of the best operating belt, each from a physique form and composition standpoint. The appropriate belt or waistpack will sit snugly across the physique with out being too tight or driving up or falling down whereas shifting. Some manufacturers do that higher than others, and a mode that works for one particular person could not work for one more.
We’ve discovered that women and men put on waistbelts in a different way — males have a a lot straighter line from waist to hips, and girls are inclined to taper on the waist and widen on the hips. In consequence, males are inclined to put on them on the pure hips and girls on the narrowest level on their our bodies.
It’s at all times finest to attempt a waistbelt on earlier than you buy to make sure you get the right dimension. When shopping for on-line, observe every model’s sizing charts and directions. Some, just like the Salomon Sense Professional, will point out that they run a little bit small, and you must go for the bigger for those who fall between sizes. However, a belt just like the Janji Multipass Sling Bag has loads of adjustability and two methods to put on it.
Storage and Dimension
Even inside the three classes of operating belts, there are a number of storage capacities amongst totally different designs and types. The perfect operating belt for you could be a easy, stable belt that may maintain water, such because the Bare Operating Band, or a maximal waistpack with a number of capability, just like the Final Course Extremely Belt. Or you could desire a wider-width belt that feels higher in your stomach than a skinny one, despite the fact that you’re not carrying as a lot.
You might also think about how simple it’s to entry the gadgets you’re storing: Are there zipper pockets, magnetic closures, or cloth overlays? Do the stuff you’re carrying really feel stable and safe whereas operating? The listing we’ve compiled above contains an choice to go well with the wants and preferences of nearly anybody.
Like different operating gear, we search for operating belts and waistpacks with good airflow and wick sweat when doable, protecting chafing and moist waists to a minimal. Perhaps you run a bit chilly and like a waistbelt with thicker materials, however your finest guess for consolation continues to be to purchase one which dries shortly.
One more reason individuals put on waistpacks as a substitute of operating vests is the decreased floor space it covers on our backs and chests, thereby permitting us to thermoregulate extra simply. A pack just like the Final Course Extremely Belt will maintain virtually as a lot as a operating vest and may match higher for warm-weather coaching and racing than a conventional vest.
A waistbelt may not be the best answer for some individuals who is likely to be delicate to stress or materials round their stomachs whereas operating. The perfect operating belt for an individual who doesn’t like a decent feeling round their stomach and nonetheless desires to attempt a waistbelt could possibly be one which stretches simply, just like the Bare Operating Band, or one which has an adjustable strap, such because the Nathan Peak Hydration Waist Pak, which could be modified to totally different consolation ranges.
Why You Ought to Belief Us
iRunFar’s strong testing course of ensures you get one of the best gear in your wants. We think about high quality, sturdiness, price, and a number of different components when selecting which fashions of substances to check.
Based mostly on a long time of expertise as runners and equipment reviewers on this area, we extensively researched the operating belts and waistpacks market earlier than selecting roughly 20 high candidates for in depth testing in our first iteration of this information.
We then put the merchandise by way of the paces on mountains and singletrack and thru rocks, mud, rain, and some genuinely epic storms. Moreover, we examined these operating waistbelts by way of all 4 seasons. Finally, we recognized one of the best operating hydration belts to place on this information. Through the years since we first printed this information, our gear crew has continued testing operating belts by way of the identical rigorous course of and updating the listing above in order that one of the best choices stay.
Please be aware that product fashions are routinely discontinued within the operating world, whereas new ones incessantly come to market. On the identical time, we at iRunFar typically preserve utilizing our high picks in our each day operating … they’re our high picks, in spite of everything! Typically, that continued use leads to uncovering product failures. Contemplating product discontinuations, new product introductions, and product failures, we routinely replace our purchaser’s guides based mostly on previous and ongoing testing and analysis by our authors and editorial crew. Once we replace any purchaser’s information, most merchandise will probably stay the identical. That matches our aim: to get you in one of the best gear you’ll use for a very long time.
Regularly Requested Questions About Operating Belts and Waistpacks
What’s the distinction between a operating belt, waistpack, and waistbelt?
Not an entire lot! These phrases are typically used interchangeably by manufacturers advertising their merchandise, although waistpacks, just like the UltrAspire Synaptic 2.0 Waist Pack, typically have extra carrying capability than a belt just like the Nathan 5k Waist Belt. The entire names consult with a bit of substances worn across the waist with pockets and holsters for storing water and equipment. For ease, we additionally use these phrases interchangeably on this information.
Why would I exploit a operating belt or waistpack as a substitute of a hydration vest?
Typically, it comes right down to the size of your run, what it’s good to carry, and private choice. In case your run is lower than an hour, and the climate isn’t scorching, you’ll unlikely want a lot water. On this situation, it’s typically pointless to hold a full operating vest when all it’s good to carry are your keys and a cellphone, all of which you’ll be able to slot in a small belt just like the Nathan 5k Waist Belt.
For some individuals, utilizing a belt additionally covers up much less of their chest and again, growing air flow and serving to them keep cool.
Why ought to I exploit a operating belt as a substitute of pockets on my operating shorts or tights?
In actuality, a operating belt or your operating shorts or tights could be nice choices for storing a comparatively small quantity of substances, so it’s a matter of private choice and what feels probably the most comfy for you.
We’ll say, after having examined many shorts and tights over time, few clothes maintain greater than your keys and maybe one snack with out problem, so typically, a operating belt opens up the chance to hold a little bit extra, comparable to a cellphone or water bottle. Even a minimalist belt like Nathan Zipster Lite will maintain the necessities for a brief run.
What are the advantages of selecting a operating belt that carries water?
This comes right down to distance or your private hydration wants — perhaps your run is within the two-hour vary in average climate, lengthy sufficient that you simply’d prefer to hydrate, however brief sufficient that you simply don’t want the liter or extra of water storage capability a hydration vest presents. Operating hydration waistpacks just like the Final Course Race Belt that carry a single mushy flask, or the UltrAspire Synaptic 2.0 Waist Pack, which might maintain a hard-sided water bottle, can complement runs like this.
What can I carry in a operating belt or waistpack?
Something you need. The usual is keys, operating gas, cellphone, and perhaps hydration. For belts with a bigger carrying capability, just like the Final Course Extremely Belt, you’ll be able to add in an additional layer, sufficient energy for a few hours on the path, and even trekking poles. The Janji Multipass Sling Bag is nice for actions like biking, mountain climbing, journey, and operating.
How do I preserve my abdomen comfy carrying a operating belt?
Some individuals like a slight compressive feeling across the center, whereas others hate any stress over the stomach. In case you’re within the second camp and nonetheless need to discover one of the best operating belt for brief runs, select one which stretches very simply, just like the Bare Operating Band. If doable, we suggest attempting out a number of totally different sizes to see what feels finest for you.
An alternate is adjusting the place you put on the pack in your physique; this can be a bit simpler for males, as their physique form permits them to suit a waistbelt on the true hips relatively than over the abdomen.
Name for Feedback
- Do you like a operating belt or a handheld water bottle whenever you’re on a shorter mission that doesn’t require a hydration pack?
- What are your favourite operating belts, perhaps some that we didn’t overview on this information? Tell us, and we’ll think about them for future updates to this text!