10 Best Runner's Belts | April 2017

We spent 29 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top picks for this wiki. Ideal for keeping your phone, keys and wallet secure and accessible while you’re exercising, the running belts listed here come in a variety of sizes and designs. And if you regularly find yourself jogging or hiking in the dark, many of these models even include LED lights and reflective strips for nighttime safety. Skip to the best runner's belt on Amazon.
10 Best Runner's Belts | April 2017
Overall Rank: 5
Best Mid-Range
★★★
Overall Rank: 8
Best High-End
★★★
Overall Rank: 3
Best Inexpensive
★★★★
10
Thanks to its smart expandable design, the Daswise Exercise can hold quite a few items when required, but it feels slim and lightweight when you aren't carrying a lot. It's also waterproof to protect your electronics if you get caught in the rain.
  • does not shift or bounce
  • fits waists up to 43 inches
  • elastic may warp over time
Brand Daswise
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 4.0 / 5.0
9
Designed to accommodate a wide range of waist sizes, the Camden Gear Hydration features a large 6.5-inch pouch that can hold most cell phones and credit cards with extra room to spare. As a bonus, it includes two BPA-free water bottles.
  • 4 elastic hanging straps
  • velcro attachment is easy to use
  • can shift or slide during runs
Brand Camden Gear
Model pending
Weight 8.8 ounces
Rating 3.5 / 5.0
8
The Nathan Trail Mix is designed for multidirectional stretching, which comes in handy during runs on rugged terrain. The external mesh and zippered pockets keep your valuables easily accessible and ensure they stay securely in place.
  • helpful one-pull tension lock
  • stretches easily to fit most sizes
  • built-in water bottle holsters
Brand NATHAN
Model 4625NIP
Weight 8 ounces
Rating 4.3 / 5.0
7
Weighing in at less than nine ounces, you’ll probably forget about the Nuclear Strength Fitness as soon as you slip it on. Its practical design prevents chafing, and it has a strong buckle for extended stability over the long term.
  • appearance is simple and trendy
  • accommodates all smartphones
  • limited storage space
Brand Nuclear Strength
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 3.5 / 5.0
6
The Level Terrain FlipBelt is made from a blend of moisture-wicking spandex and Lycra that is soft and easy on the skin. Its innovative internal pocket system runs the length of the belt, providing a simple storage area for your valuables.
  • it is machine-washable
  • available in 9 sporty colors
  • sleek minimalist design
Brand Level Terrain
Model FBB
Weight 4.8 ounces
Rating 4.4 / 5.0
5
The Mbio Apparel Light-Up runs on two long-lasting batteries that provide up to 80 hours of use before needing a change. In addition to its LED lights, it features a large reflective strip in case your batteries die in the middle of a late-night jog.
  • suitable for hiking and dog walking
  • fits waists from 23 to 40 inches
  • lights offer 3 display modes
Brand Mbio Apparel
Model pending
Weight 0.3 ounces
Rating 4.0 / 5.0
4
If you are a nighttime runner, then the sleek and practical Illumiseen Reflective is a smart and safe choice. It’s fully adjustable, providing 360 degrees of optimal visibility for any vehicles in the area. It offers three bright neon colors for you to choose from.
  • light can be set to flash or glow
  • micro-usb-rechargeable battery
  • ultra-lightweight design
Brand Illumiseen
Model pending
Weight 7.2 ounces
Rating 4.6 / 5.0
3
Even if you’re hiking on rough trails or running in inclement weather, the SNHNY Top Fit won’t tear or wear down due to its highly durable construction. It features an adjustable strap that keeps the belt firmly in place at all times.
  • main pocket with 2 inner slots
  • versatile expandable compartment
  • design is slim and subtle
Brand SNHNY Top Fit
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 4.6 / 5.0
2
The Urban Active Sports is constructed with sweatproof foam padding and a cover that is fully compatible with touchscreens, making it easy to answer calls or change songs while exercising. It also comes with a money-back guarantee.
  • clip to attach keys
  • digital survival guide
  • easy quick-snap buckle
Brand Urban Active Sports
Model running belt lauf gurte
Weight 6.4 ounces
Rating 4.8 / 5.0
1
It happens to every runner at some point – a bluebird day transforms into a monsoon without warning in the middle of a run. With a rain-resistant neoprene fabric and a special waterproof zipper, the Sport2People Pack is a nice contingency plan.
  • convenient earphones hole
  • resists corrosion over time
  • elastic does not stretch or warp
Brand Sport2People
Model pending
Weight 4 ounces
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

Buyer's Guide

How Do I Choose The Correct Running Belt For Me?

Choosing a running belt has a lot to do with what type of runner you are. If you're an ultra-marathoner, for example, then you'll probably want a belt that can accommodate protein bars, a pair of water bottles, personal identification, and some electrolyte gels. If you're a middle-distance runner who does a lot of interval training, a streamlined belt without any holsters might be more your style.

Adults who run with strollers might prefer a running belt that allows them to bring along snacks, or maybe even a toy, for their children, whereas people who are always on call might want a belt that provides a cushioned pocket for safely storing their phones. If you plan on running outdoors, make it a point to confirm that any belt's material is waterproof. If you plan on running in any punishing conditions, make sure that a running belt is weather-proof, as well.

The harder your workouts, the more important it will be to confirm that a running belt's pouches can be sealed, and that any water bottles can be locked in or otherwise tethered to your side. If you find that certain items along a belt are brushing up against your abdomen, then simply swivel the belt around until none of its compartments can be affected by your stride.

Before purchasing any running belt, it helps to do a bit of research on the available sizes. You want a belt to be adjustable, if not elastic. And you also want a belt that will not droop or brush too tightly on your sides.

Basic Advantages To Owning a Running Belt

An average cellphone provides its user with ongoing access to calling, texting, email, music, and a camera, along with a variety of apps that can help any runner set or achieve several personal goals. The issue, assuming that you are a runner, is that a cellphone can be unwieldy. This is where a running belt may come in handy, by offering a padded compartment for any phone, while also protecting that phone from any rain or heat or sweat.

By way of comparison, consider the potential consequences of jogging long distances without a running belt. It's a significant risk to go trail running, for example, without access to a GPS (i.e., a cellphone), a first-aid kit, and potable water. In fact, running in the wilderness without any of these accessories could place you in danger of getting lost, suffering an infection, or becoming dehydrated.

It is worth mentioning that a running belt can also be used for several non-athletic purposes. Adults can use a running belt for saving money whenever wandering along any promenade, amusement area, or other venue where the prices tend to be extremely high. You can keep some snacks inside your belt's compartments, while using public drinking fountains to refill your bottles, free of charge.

A Brief History of The Running Belt

Belts, as a concept, have been around since The Bronze Age. And running as a form of fitness has been around even longer. That being the case, it seems odd that the first official running belt wasn't invented until 1979. In the patent application for what they called a "canteen belt," three California inventors – Peter Glusker, Walter Fontana, and Mitchell Feingold – described their device as “an adjustable canteen for use by any runner in readily obtaining a drink of water by way of a plastic tube or by hand.”

Obviously, this initial running belt came with its own limitations. The belt's canteens were custom-made with foot-long tubes extending out of the lids - a concept which failed to account for the fact that most runners regulate their breathing, rendering it difficult to clamp down on a straw. What's more, these tubes would inevitably wind up dangling around a runner's legs. That is unless the runner stopped to tuck those tubes into the folds.

There have, of course, been innovations over the past four decades, most notably a transition from the all-elastic running belts of the early eighties to the much more functional - and waterproof - nylon and polyester belts of today. A lot of the current era's running belts weigh between 4-8 oz. These belts are generally built with an adjustable holster (for carrying water bottles) and one or more compartments (for keeping personal items padded and safe).

Beyond that, the only major change to a running belt has been the size of its consumer base. According to a recent study, more than 42% of Americans run for fitness on a regular basis. The largest segment of that percentage is represented by women, ages 25-34.



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Last updated on April 24 2017 by Sam Kraft

Sam is a marketing/communications professional and freelance writer who resides in Chicago, IL and is perpetually celebrating the Cubs’ 2016 World Series victory.