This is a review guide to 9 of the best CrossFit weight vests available to buy in 2023.
From push ups to lunges, running, and even walking, a weighted vest can amp up the resistance of bodyweight exercises and CrossFit WODs.
Adjustable vests allow the addition and removal of small weight packets so you can increase the weight as you get stronger, or depending on the exercise.
The weight needs to be well spread and the vest sturdily made, so you can workout with the confidence that the vest won’t split open and the weights packs won’t move around as you exercise.
We’ve reviewed 9 of the best weighted vests for CrossFit that allow some degree of weight adjustment and are suitable for WOD exercises.
Table of Contents
9 Best CrossFit Weight Vests
The MiR Air Flow Weighted Vest With Zipper Option has a maximum weight of 60lbs and you can choose how much weight is included when you purchase. It is made from a comfortable material that is designed to soak up the heat and pressure of your body to encourage good air flow and to minimize your body temperature. The bottom of the vest can be adjusted to ensure a tight fit and the weights, which are designed to last a lifetime, are made from solid iron. There are different vests for men and women, to ensure they fit properly.
The vest is on the expensive side of this list, but quality materials and a decent range of weight options are attractive. It does have a tricky strap system that is difficult to attach and detach yourself. If you pack the vest with the maximum 60lb weight, the stitching can struggle under vigorous exercise.
- Body strap ensures a good weight
- Options for men and women
- Solid iron weights
- Strap system is difficult for solo use
- Struggles when under full load
Weighted vests can be used for a host of different CrossFit exercises, including pull ups and for running. The Cross101 Weighted Vest is good for pull ups and reasonably static exercises, but the sand bag weights and the vest itself don’t fit snugly enough for running. You can get additional shoulder pads, which help reduce some of the strain felt around the shoulders.
It does have a water bottle holder, but if you have a lot of weights in the vest, things can start to get a little too busy. The vest is a really good price and comes in maximum weights up to 140lbs, although it’s difficult to see a purpose for that kind of weight.
- Wide range of maximum weights
- Bottle holder
- Not ideal for running
The CAP Barbell Adjustable Weighted Vest is a strong and adjustable vest that comes in a great range of maximum weights from 20lb up to 150lb. It is worth noting that there are differences in vest design, depending on the size bought. Anything up to the 80lbs vest uses sandbags as weights, while those of 100lb or heavier uses more stable steel weights. Also, the 20lb vest is short, which means it is better suited for running and for functional movement exercises. Additional features like a safety reflective strip and adjustable belt are handy features that can be overlooked on the design of these vests
The price of the CAP Barbell vest is good and CAP is a well-known name in the fitness industry for their supply of weight-training equipment. However, the heavier vests can be prone to tearing, especially if used for running and, despite CAP’s history, there have been some quality control issues with the vests.
- Decent price
- Great range
- Reflective strip is useful
- Only 100lbs and heavier vests use steel weights
- Anything bigger than the 20lbs vest may be too cumbersome for running
The RunMax Adjustabel Weighted Vest comes in maximum weights from 12lbs to 140lbs and, like the CAP Barbell above, different sizes have different designs and layouts. Any of the vests under 100lbs use packs containing iron sand, while the larger vests use smaller 3lb iron plates. The bags can be difficult to get in and out of the pockets but the iron weights are much easier to manage.
Also, there have been some problems with the weight bags falling apart after a few months of use. The vest does have a cell phone pocket and a slot to put earphones through, which are useful features. The vest does include shoulder pads, but these don’t really connect to the straps, they are just placed underneath and they can ride around when you move.
- Weights range from 12lbs to 140lbs
- Heavier vests use 3lb iron plates
- Cell phone pocket and headphone slot
- Smaller vests uses iron sand bags that can break
- Shoulder pads aren’t connected
The Prodigen Running Weight Vest isn’t adjustable but this has its benefits as well as its pitfalls. Because you don’t have to insert and remove weights, it means that they are stitched into the vest securely so are less prone to moving around as you run. But it does mean that you’re stuck with the 8 to 30 pounds of weight in the vest: for most people, there should be a suitable weight, but it does lack the flexibility of some other vests.
It is also quite expensive considering its lack of flexibility. This lack of flexibility also means the vest might not fit snugly enough to prevent the vest from bouncing around and causing some injury to the skin and especially to the collar bone.
- Designed specifically for running
- Fits smaller figures well
- Weight is well distributed
- Weights can’t be removed
- 30lbs is the heaviest vest
- If it doesn’t fit exactly, it can be painful
The Titan Fitness Adjustable Weighted Vest does come in a selection of different weights and, while a lot of other models use bulkier and less stable sand or iron pellets for their lower weight vests, the Titan Fitness 40lbs Adjustable Weighted Vest uses 2.5 pounds ingot metal weights. These sit tightly in the pockets and tend to be easier to insert and remove according to your needs.
The vest is expensive but it is short, which makes it suitable for running, and it feels more durable than cheaper vests, with stronger stitching, so it should last.
- Well-made and durable
- Uses ingot metal weights
- Vest is short so suitable for CrossFit functional exercises
The Henkelion Weighted Vest comes in 4lbs, 12lbs, and 16lbs weights. The weight can’t be adjusted and this is another vest that has been designed for running and gymnastic exercises that require a lot of movement. An elasticated vest and shoulder straps should keep the vest firmly in place and it is billed as being suitable for men or women. It is well priced, on the lower end of the vests on this list, in fact, and weight is distributed evenly on the front and back.
The vest is more suitable for petite frames, but not too petite. If you’re not the exact right size, although it can be adjusted to some extent, the vest will either dig in because it’s too tight or bounce around because it isn’t secure enough. Also, it uses iron pellets and these can rust if they get wet, so not only can the vest not be washed but it may rust if you run in heavy rain and don’t have some means of drying it out.
- Designed for running
- Difficult to get it to fit properly
- Can’t be used in the rain
- Can’t be washed
The Aduro Sport Weighted Vest is a fixed-weight vest that is designed for running. Unlike the Henkelion and Titan Fitness options above, however, it does have a mesh pocket at the back which is supposed to allow for the addition of some extra weight.
It uses iron fines for the weight, which means that they can rust if wet, and sweat is just as effective a rusting agent as rain or soapy water. The vest does come in 4lbs, 6lbs, 12lbs, 20lbs, 25lbs, and 30lbs variants, but all are expensive compared even to adjustable vests with a much higher capacity. There have also been instances of the seams bursting or tearing so that the iron fines leak out.
- 4lbs, 6lbs, 12lbs, 20lbs, 25lbs, and 30lbs options
- Mesh pocket allows for some extra weight
- Iron fines rust easily
- Seams are prone to bursting
The Hyperwear Hyper Vest Pro Weighted Vest is a very expensive weighted vest but it does have many cool features. The vest comes as a 10lb weighted vest, but this is adjustable. Not only can existing weights be removed but you can buy and add additional weights up to 20lbs, 23lbs, 33lbs, or 42lbs depending on whether it is the small, medium, large, or extra-large vest respectively. The vest covers more of the body, which means that the weight is evenly distributed, and it has an elastic lace style fastening that makes it possible to ensure it fits really closely to the body.
Although it does have good features, the vest lacks durability and while the vest itself is already expensive, buying additional weights only serves to add extra cost to the purchase.
- Good design should ensure a snug fit
- Weights can be added and removed
- Very expensive
- Extra weights need to be bought separately
- Its coverage means you get very hot wearing it
Buyers Guide To The Best Weight Vests For CrossFit
A weighted vest is different to a plate carrier. Plate carriers have fastenings that you can connect a weight plate to in order to increase the intensity of a workout. Weighted vests contain the weights themselves.
They typically allow you to more evenly disperse the weight to the front and back of your body and all around. And because they sit securely and snugly on the body, they are better suited to CrossFit workouts.
When looking for a weighted vest, you should consider the following features and options:
Some vests have a static weight limit. The weights can’t be removed, and no extra weight can be added. Others allow for the addition and removal of weights in increments. In either case, it is generally recommended that you add approximately 10% of your total bodyweight for most forms of exercise to increase intensity.
The best CrossFit vests are usually between 20lbs and 35lbs, and the Murph workout vests are 20lb in weight.
Whether the weights can be removed or not, the material they are made from matters. Cheaper vests tend to use sand, expensive vests use solid plates of iron or steel, and in-between vests use iron pellets.
Plates usually fit more tightly and are easier to add and remove than bags of sand. Bags of sand are also prone to breaking and spilling. They can also move around more because the weight is not fixed.
As well as weight adjustments, the best weighted vests offer size and fit adjustments via shoulder and waist straps. This can be especially important in vests that claim to be one-size-fits-all or one-size-fits-nearly-all. The vest should fit snugly, but not be too tight: especially true if you’re wearing it for running or for gymnastic exercises, squats, and burpees.
Verdict – Which Is The Best CrossFit Weight Vest?
Weighted vests can really ramp up the intensity of a workout by increasing the resistance of bodyweight and other exercises. They are used in a lot of CrossFit workouts, especially in Murph workouts, and there are a good range of weight vests to choose from.
The MiR Airflow Weighted Vest offered the best combination of comfort, flexibility and price, making it the best CrossFit weight vest we’ve seen. The Cross101 Weighted Vest benefits from shoulder pads and a lower price, making it a great value option.
More CrossFit gear review guides:
- Pull Up Stands
- Jump Ropes
- Resistance Bands
- Hand Grips
- Knee Sleeves
- Gymnastic Rings
- Plyo Boxes
- Ab Rollers