Running Vest: The Ultimate Direction Guide

A running vest is a useful addition to any short jog or lengthy run. Whether you’re simply going for a short hike or undertaking an ultra-marathon race, a running vest from Ultimate Direction is a must-have. Ultimate Direction has running vests for everyone from beginner trail runners right through to the seasoned ultra runners.


Take a look through this article where we’ll be answering some of the frequently asked questions regarding running vests and other hydration gear. When it comes to preparing for an upcoming race, starting your trail running journey or looking for a hydration solution for long days out on the trails, Ultimate Direction has your back.

Our products are designed to heighten your outdoor sporting experience and help keep you comfortable and hydrated throughout your journey. Keep reading to learn more about running vests and the many benefits of this ingenious product.

What Is The Point Of A Running Vest?

Running vests are designed to move with your body, fitting comfortably without hindering your run. A running vest allows you to carry the essentials, be it water, food, or other miscellaneous necessities without the annoying bounce of standard backpacks.
Is A Running Vest Worth It?

Getting yourself a reliable running vest is absolutely worth it. Wearing a vest will have you prepared for your run, equipped with all the essentials to help you make the most of your outdoor adventure. Ultimate Direction running vests are designed for athletes by athletes. They are manufactured from high-quality, lightweight, breathable, and durable materials to take your trail running to the next level.

Is A Running Vest Or Belt Better?

Whether a vest or belt would be a better option for you is entirely dependent on your level of activity and what you hope to gain from these products. Longer runs and longer trail races would warrant a running vest, as your water refill stations may be far apart or non-existent. Your trail run or race may also require you to take along extra gear such as a waterproof jacket, extra nutrition, gloves, and first aid kit all of which can easily be carried in a running vest but possibly not fit into a minimalist running belt.

Alternatively, wearing a hydration belt would be more practical for shorter runs and races. If you’re still unsure of which option would work best for you, take a look at this quick summary of advantages offered by vests and belts respectively.


Advantages Of Choosing A Running Vest:

A running vest is vastly beneficial to anyone spending long hours out on the trails. A vest can simply hold more water and gear, which is essential when you’re covering long distances and need to keep up with your body’s demand for hydration and nutrition.

A vest is also the better option for those who need to carry around a lot of gear during their runs. If you have a phone, jacket, extra nutrition, chargers, and more that you need to take with you on your runs and races, then a vest is the right choice for you. Vests are can carry plenty gear without being too bulky on your back.



Advantages Of Choosing A Running Belt:

If a vest doesn't sound like the right option for you, you could consider getting a running belt instead. Running belts are favoured by short-distance runners, as they are built to fit snugly around your waist and carry only the absolute essentials.

Running belts are a great option for anyone who simply wants to keep a water bottle at their hip during short distances and carry other essentials such as a phone, keys and gels. Alternatively, a running belt is a great add-on for the very long ultra-distance trail races where they can supplement your running vest to carry additional nutrition, a phone and trekking poles. All Ultimate Direction running belts are able to carry trekking poles with accessible silicone-lined elastics or bungee cords.


Do Running Vests Bounce?

While running vests are designed to fit your body without bouncing around too much, there is always a chance of slight movement that may cause chafing in some places. The best way to avoid this is to ensure that you get a vest that is perfectly fitted to you. All Ultimate Direction running vests are fitted with a Comfort CinchTM system and adjustable sternum straps to ensure a snug bounce-free fit.


Should A Running Vest Be Tight?

Whether it’s packed full or completely empty, a vest should fit comfortably to your body. Your vest should not fit too loosely, lest it jostles about and causes irritation. On the other hand, your vest should not fit so tightly that it hinders your movements or makes you uncomfortable. Ideally, your vest should not move around much while you're running but shouldn’t be tight enough to restrict chest expansion either.

How To Fit Your Running Vests

Having a vest that fits your body correctly is vital for ensuring a successful run. A vest that is too loose may move about and throw you off your stride, whereas a vest that is too tight may hinder your ability to breathe and slow you down.

The ideal vest should fit adjacent to your body, with all points of the vest maintaining contact with your body. This isn’t to say that it should be so tight as to hinder upper body movement. A good way to gauge if your vest fits perfectly is to slide a finger between your body and vest, ensuring there is enough space to do so with ease. With this quick trick, you’ll be able to determine whether or not there will be enough room for deep inhales or muscle contortion during your run.

The perfect middle ground is an indicator that you’ve got the right vest size for your body. There are a few steps you can take to ensure you’re making the right choice when it comes to buying a vest.

Here is a quick guide to finding the right-sized vest to fit your body and facilitate your run:

1. Measure Your Chest

By measuring your chest before heading to the store or scrolling online for vests, you’ll have a better idea of the specific size you’re looking for. By taking your own measurements, you’ll be able to narrow down your search range. Be sure to measure all the way around your chest, once while breathing in, and once while breathing out again.

You should also consider your height and weight when deciding on a vest as these factors will also have an impact on which vest size will work best for you. Once you’re sure of your measurements, you will have a better idea of the ballpark you’re working with, and you can narrow down your search to a few different sizes rather than browsing through every option.

2. Pack And Unpack Your Vest

You may believe you’ve found the right-sized vest after a single try-on, but you’ll need to consider how the vest will fit once it’s full as opposed to when it’s empty. Depending on the design of the product, an empty vest will fit differently when full. To test this out, start by stuffing your vest with extra clothes, water bottles, or hydration bladders and then try it on.

This will give you a clearer idea of how it will feel when you’re out running. Don’t hesitate to move about, jog lightly on the spot or take a quick sprint. Take note of any bumps or discomfort while you’re testing it out. If the vest feels a little tighter around your chest or sags in the wrong places, then you might need to consider a different size.

Be sure to adjust all size adjustments mechanisms on the vest. For example on the Ultimate Direction running vests, you can change the fit of the vest using the Comfort CinchTM system on the back of the back, bungee cord and hook system to cinch the size of the pack if it isn’t filled completely and adjust the front sternum rail straps.


3. Refer To The Sizing Guide

Some online stores that sell vests come with a sizing guide to help you compare options. Don’t just click on the first item that catches your eye and hope for the best. Take a look through the various size options and make sure that the one you choose matches up with your own measurements. Lastly, remember to leave the tag on, and keep the packaging until you’re absolutely certain that you’ve found the right size for you! You can find Ultimate Direction’s sizing guide here. 


Get Reliable Running Vests From Ultimate Direction

If you’re considering getting a vest of your own, then Ultimate Direction is the way to go. As pioneers in the running vest industry, we strive to bring you the best products to help you improve your outdoor sporting adventures. We offer a variety of vests and vestas, along with a broad array of alternative hydration products, backpacks and outdoor apparel. Take a quick browse through our catalogue and pick out the perfect product to suit your outdoor adventure needs.

We believe in creating sustainable products that put the planet first, in order to preserve the beloved outdoors for the sake of every outdoor enthusiast. All of our products are 100% BPA-free and all of our running apparel is completely PFC-free. Our aim is to promote sustainability by encouraging the use of recycled materials and gearing towards sustainable designs for all of our products.

By testing and improving our designs through collaboration with athletes all over the globe, we can guarantee that all of our products are made for like-minded, outdoor enthusiasts at heart. Our collaboration projects allow us to make the ultimate direction difference, bringing you products designed by athletes, for athletes.

Now that you have a better understanding of running vests, how they work, and why they’re so important, why not get one of your own? Ultimate Direction is the ideal place to find high-quality running gear, and we’re ready to help deck you out with the best of the best products in time for your next adventure.


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