Top 10 Best Running Belts in 2018

Running belts need to be able to handle some punishment, so you need to be aware that the quality of the different belts aren’t all the same.

The quality varies from brand to brand – and some belts also offer different sizes and features than other belts.

Having checked hundreds of running belt reviews, we can say that the Salomon Hydro 45 Belt is the best choice for most people.

Salomon Hydro 45 Belt

The best reviewed running belt
Rated 4.30 out of 5

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PS: We have checked 1,840 reviews to make this top 10 list!
1Salomon Hydro 45 Belt4.30Check Price
2Nathan HipsterNathan Hipster4.26Check Price
3Camelbak Arc 2Camelbak Arc 24.11Check Price
4Ultimate Direction GrooveUltimate Direction Groove4.06Check Price
5Dakine Low Rider 5LDakine Low Rider 5L4.00Check Price
6Aqua Quest AquaRooAqua Quest AquaRoo4.00Check Price
7Ultimate Direction Jurek Endure3.94Check Price
8Salomon Agile 5003.94Check Price
9Camelbak DelaneyCamelbak Delaney3.85Check Price
10Nathan Mercury 2Nathan Mercury 23.85Check Price

How we rate the bags

We have checked 1,840 running belt reviews, so we can show you the weighted average rating of all the bags.

Using the average ratings, you can check what all the reviewers think instead of just viewing the subjective opinion of one specific reviewer.

It’s much simplier to find the best bags that way.

Not sure what running belts to choose? Read on as we are going to take a closer look at each bag!

1 – Salomon Hydro 45 Belt

4.5 review stars Rating 4.30 based on 13 reviews

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Here’s what the reviewers think about the Salomon Hydro 45 Belt:

Reviewers like these things about the Salomon Hydro 45 Belt

  • Many reviewers commend the Salomon Hydro water bottle belt for its durable fabric and robust construction.
  • Users recommend the pack as an additional gear for those who are into hiking, running, and climbing.
  • Reviewers pointed out that its extra stash pouch provides easy access to water bottles when on moderate hikes.
  • Testers mentioned that it is comfortable to wear.
  • Other testers praised the belt for its versatile and stable design.
  • Users noted that hydration bottles could be accessed quickly.
  • Several of those who have tried the belt mentioned that they were able to customize its length based on their preference.
  • Many reviewers pointed out that it does not rub against the back when running.
  • Users liked its minimalist design.
  • They also noted that the water bottles do not leak even when used in climbing.
  • Other reviewers said that the product is conveniently lightweight.
  • Several of those who have tried the belt mentioned that it stays in place whenever they run.
  • Other reviewers noted that its pouch could store a smartphone as well as an energy bar.

Reviewers don’t like these things

  • A reviewer noted that the bottle bounces around, hitting the back with every stride.
  • Another reviewer indicated that the strap is a little uncomfortable when worn.

2 – Nathan Hipster

4.5 review stars Rating 4.26 based on 14 reviews

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Nathan Hipster

Here’s what the reviewers think about the Nathan Hipster:

Reviewers like these things about the Nathan Hipster

  • Testers found out that the Nathan Hipster running belt pack and fitness belt is durable due to its nylon and polyester fabric.
  • Reviewers mentioned that the pack is comfortable to wear.
  • Users noted that their phones could fit on the belt.
  • Other users also stated that it comes with several pockets to fit all small essentials.
  • Other testers said that it comes in a variety of attractive and stylish colors.
  • Users pointed out that the stretch belt is super soft, making it comfortable to wear around the waist.
  • According to some reviewers, the pockets could be accessed quickly.
  • According to those who used it, the belt stays put even when running.
  • Other users thought that the belt is ideal for running, horseriding, and other similar activities.
  • Many users said that the backpack is lightweight yet durable.

Reviewers don’t like these things

  • A tester discovered that the phone might bounce out of the front pocket.
  • A reviewer mentioned that it might not fit a variety of body types.
  • Another reviewer thought that it holds in sweat.

3 – Camelbak Arc 2

4 review stars Rating 4.11 based on 51 reviews

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Camelbak Arc 2

Here’s what the reviewers think about the Camelbak Arc 2:

Reviewers like these things about the Camelbak Arc 2

  • According to users, the Camelbak Arc hydration belt is comfortable to use.
  • Users took notice of its lightweight design and minimal gear storage.
  • Other users thought that its fabric provides sufficient durability to the bag.
  • Reviewers mentioned that its pockets could be accessed quickly.
  • Users noted that the hydration belt includes two bottles which could be rapidly accessed.
  • They thought that the bottle is easy to squeeze and has a self-sealing valve to minimize leaks.
  • Testers said that its bottle is BPA-free, reducing the plastic aftertaste of the water.
  • Reviewers mentioned that its cargo pocket could be removed.
  • Other reviewers also found that the bottle has a flex and twist release system.
  • Reviewers indicated that the belt is also designed to carry essentials including phone and keys.
  • Other reviewers mentioned that the bottles do not move when the belt is tightened.
  • They also said that the belt is easy to use.

Reviewers don’t like these things

  • A reviewer thought that the hydration belt might keep rotating continually.
  • Another reviewer noted that the pockets are quite small.

4 – Ultimate Direction Groove

4 review stars Rating 4.06 based on 25 reviews

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Ultimate Direction Groove

Here’s what the reviewers think about the Ultimate Direction Groove:

Reviewers like these things about the Ultimate Direction Groove

  • Testers found out that the Ultimate Direction Groove stereo belt is comfortable to use.
  • According to those who used it, the belt has a durable design.
  • Users also noted that it is capable of distributing load efficiently.
  • Other users found that its compression waist belt provides a secure and breathable fit.
  • Other testers recommend the use of the pack for running, climbing, and hiking.
  • Reviewers thought that its mesh back panel conforms to the body well.
  • According to some reviewers, the belt is compatible with phones.
  • Reviewers note that it has a specialized velcro pocket for small items such as sunglasses and keys.
  • Other users also stated that its body bottles are essential to keeping themselves hydrated.
  • They also mentioned that the bag is lightweight and functional.
  • Many users pointed out that it does not bounce when running.
  • Reviewers also noticed that it stays in place when biking or hiking.

Reviewers don’t like these things

  • A tester discovered that its mesh fabric is fragile and may tend to develop a rip.
  • A reviewer mentioned that the back of the belt could form holes.

5 – Dakine Low Rider 5L

4 review stars Rating 4.00 based on 5 reviews

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Dakine Low Rider 5L

Here’s what the reviewers think about the Dakine Low Rider 5L:

Reviewers like these things about the Dakine Low Rider 5L

  • Many users thought the bladder works well and the hose routing and retention is great.
  • One user refer to it as a brilliant nice looking bag.
  • A lot of users agree that it is a simple way to carry essentials without having to wear packs on short ride.
  • Many bikers love it for its well construction, comfortable fit and decent amount of space for personal items.
  • Most riders describe it as the perfect alternative for everyone who prefers to ride without a big backpack.
  • A lot of users particularly liked the back zippered pocket hydration feature of the bag.
  • Others liked the removable hose that is clipped to the waist belt.
  • Many users enjoy how the interior organizer pockets perfectly store a replacement tube, air pump, snack and phone in a fleece-lined pocket.
  • Overall, users chose the bag for its hydration capacity, good construction, comfortable fit, lightweight and convenience.

Reviewers don’t like these things

  • Some users said the straps won’t stay tight.
  • Others thought it would’ve been great if it has side pockets for additional storage.

6 – Aqua Quest AquaRoo

4 review stars Rating 4.00 based on 202 reviews

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Aqua Quest AquaRoo

Here’s what the reviewers think about the Aqua Quest AquaRoo:

Reviewers like these things about the Aqua Quest AquaRoo

  • Many users said that this bag fits into a simple handheld article.
  • Reviewers who have used the pack said that the material is top notch, lightweight but durable.
  • Several users said that it is equipped with comfortable straps and two sets of support straps both on the chest and waist.
  • Users also said that after being drenched in rain and covered in mud for four days, it didn’t leak.
  • Many users praised the fact that there is also velcro across the whole top in addition to a rolling and buckling seal.
  • Most users said that it stood up to the rigors of travel and it still works perfectly.
  • Users said that even after a long time of using it, it is still in very good shape.
  • Some other reviewers said that the fabric is strong and of nice quality.

Reviewers don’t like these things

  • One user complained that the velcro on the top lost the majority of its grab fairly quickly.
  • Another user said that the shoulder straps are very thin and without much padding.
  • Some users complained that the external pouch is not waterproof.

7 – Ultimate Direction Jurek Endure

4 review stars Rating 3.94 based on 288 reviews

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Here’s what the reviewers think about the Ultimate Direction Jurek Endure:

Reviewers like these things about the Ultimate Direction Jurek Endure

  • Many reviewers noted that the craftsmanship of the Ultimate Direction Jurek vest is excellent based on their experience.
  • Other reviewers pointed out that the vest is lightweight.
  • They also said that it has sufficient pocket to carry anything they need for long distance runs.
  • Many users noticed the presence of a lacing that could carry rain gear or warm gear.
  • Several reviewers found out that its fabric is durable.
  • Many of the users felt that its internal organization makes it easy to keep small items such as pens and phones.
  • Users noted that the vest is comfortable to wear.
  • They pointed out that the integrated water bottles placed on the belt do not bounce around.
  • Several testers recommend the use of the vest for trail running or marathon running.
  • Reviewers said that the material is stretchable so it could hold things.
  • Other users pointed out that its chest straps help a lot for stability.
  • They also thought that its adjustment straps are essential to get a good fit.

Reviewers don’t like these things

  • A user said that the vest is slightly too large.
  • Another user thought that the side pockets are unreachable when it is worn.
  • A reviewer noted that it is uncomfortable when worn against the skin.

8 – Salomon Agile 500

4 review stars Rating 3.94 based on 9 reviews

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Here’s what the reviewers think about the Salomon Agile 500:

Reviewers like these things about the Salomon Agile 500

  • Many reviewers commend the Salomon Agile backpack for being lightweight yet durable.
  • Testers noted that its shoulder straps offer ventilation and reduce friction on the shoulders or around the neck.
  • Other testers noted that the harness is an ideal way of wrapping the body and dispatch the load for a more comfortable and stable use.
  • Many reviewers pointed out that it consists of a lot of pockets for storage and organization.
  • Other reviewers said that they could connect their accessories to the bag through its custom system.
  • They also noted that it has a pocket specifically designed for flasks.
  • Users liked its minimalist design.
  • Many users recommend the pack for those who are into hiking, climbing, and traveling.
  • Several of those who have tried the pack indicated that the front pocket slides conveniently on to the waist belt.
  • Other reviewers noted that they could access their poles quickly while running.
  • Many of those who have tried the pack also mentioned that the bag has a space designed conveniently for a helmet.
  • Testers said that the Motion Belt of the bag provides an ideal fit, especially when moving, enabling breathability.

Reviewers don’t like these things

  • A reviewer mentioned that it was awkward to remove and fill the hydration pack.
  • Another reviewer indicated that the bag was complicated to use.

9 – Camelbak Delaney

4 review stars Rating 3.85 based on 309 reviews

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Camelbak Delaney

Here’s what the reviewers think about the Camelbak Delaney:

Reviewers like these things about the Camelbak Delaney

  • Reviewers found out that the Camelbak Delaney waist pack conforms comfortably to the curve of the waist.
  • Users thought that it is a convenient hands-free waist pack for walkers and runners.
  • Reviewers indicated that its insulated and BPA-free water bottle includes a self-sealing jet valve to secure it from leaks.
  • Others noted that the water bottle easy to squeeze.
  • Testers said that the waist pack is equipped a pocket for essentials including phones and money.
  • Other users thought that they could easily attach their keys to a designated key clip.
  • Many reviewers found that the waist pack consists of side cinch with dual adjust.
  • According to some reviewers, the water bottle is kept cool twice as long as other waist packs they have tried.
  • Testers thought that the water from the bottle does not leave a funky aftertaste.
  • Other users also noted that the pack is versatile and efficient.
  • They also mentioned that the pack features a front and back visibility.

Reviewers don’t like these things

  • A reviewer thought that it was difficult to get the bottle out from the pack while running.
  • Another reviewer mentioned that the pack does not stay tight.

10 – Nathan Mercury 2

4 review stars Rating 3.85 based on 285 reviews

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Nathan Mercury 2

Here’s what the reviewers think about the Nathan Mercury 2:

Reviewers like these things about the Nathan Mercury 2

  • Reviewers thought that the Nathan Mercury hydration belt has a lightweight design.
  • Other reviewers remarked that it was comfortable to wear.
  • Users lauded the presence of two flasks with push-pull caps.
  • Other users noted that its design offers a soft stretch that eliminates bounce.
  • Testers found that its various designs are attractive.
  • Many of the reviewers commented on its durability as manifested by its robust fabric.
  • Users found the bag to be versatile and accessible.
  • A lot of users thought that the pack was easy to carry.
  • Many reviewers who used it commented that its perforate neoprene provides comfort and breathability.
  • Testers also found that they can store smartphones through its stretch mesh zip pocket.
  • Testers like that its reflective trim and details allow them to be seen even in low-visibility environments.

Reviewers don’t like these things

  • A reviewer thought that its bottles are too close together making the weight of the belt more concentrated.
  • Another reviewer indicated that the bottles started leaking within a few months of use.
  • A user found it difficult to adjust the belt.

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Buyer’s guide to running belts

One of the disadvantages of being a frequent runner is that you find yourself with absolutely no storage space. So, where are you supposed to keep all of the items that you simply cannot leave home without? Fortunately, there are running belts that will act as the perfect carrying option for you.

There is actually a considerable amount of variation between running belts. This can make it quite tricky to figure out what you should get, especially if you don’t have a lot of experience in these belts. This is why you should read through this guide. Here you will find all of the answers to your questions and more.

An Athlete’s Guide to Buying a Running Belt

These days, it can be difficult to leave home without carrying at least a few of your possessions. From your keys to your phone, there are certain things that you just can’t do without. Now, it can be incredibly distracting and tiresome to carry these things in your hands as you run. Not to mention, you increase the likelihood of losing these on the way too.

This is why it is a good idea for most runners to wear a running belt with them. This way, you will always have just enough storage to carry what you need. Here is what you should be aware of before you choose a running belt for yourself:

Who Needs a Running Belt?

If you don’t venture too far from your home or vehicle (less than two miles away), then there is a good chance that you will not require a running belt. Since you would probably complete your run in an hour or less, you can do without most of your basic items.

However, if you run about three to seven miles each day, that is another story entirely. In this instance, it is quite likely that you will need to wear a running belt. Even if you don’t want to carry water with you, there is still a chance that you will have to carry keys, phones, and perhaps even identification or money. Since these items can’t be carried in your hands, you will need a belt to accommodate them.

Types of Running Belts

The next thing to do is to look at all of the options that you have with running belts. This will make it easier to narrow down which one is right for you:

Waist Belt

These are also often referred to as waist packs too. This type of belt tends to be wider than the other options. The belts are also designed to adhere closely to your skin and to move around as little as possible while you are running. These belts have exterior pockets that you can use to store smaller, flat items such as your keys, phone, money, and IDs. These are arguably one of the more comfortable belts as well.

Hydration Belt

The purpose of a hydration belt for runners is rather self-explanatory. These belts are meant to hold water in one capacity or another, allowing you to remain hydrated during your run. They are usually utilized by long distance runners or those who don’t have easy access to water on their runs.

Hydration belts have loops or holders to place water bottles. These type of belts may come with their own bottles or you may have to use yours. These belts can have between one and four loops on their belts. Some – but not all – hydration loops come with external compartments where you can store certain items. These pockets can usually carry between 0.5 liters and 3 liters of belongings.

Race Belts

These are among the thinnest and lightest of all running belts. The main purpose of this pack is to be convenient without being heavy enough to interfere with your performance. Most race belts aren’t equipped to carry water or water bottles as though will just add more weight. They do, however, have space to keep some nutrition or energy bars, a phone, and some money as well.

Choosing a Hydration Belt

There are a few things that you will need to consider if you have decided that a hydration belt is what you need. For instance, if the belt isn’t sold with its own set of bottles, you will need to ensure that the bottles you have, fit perfectly into the holders.

The other thing to think about is just how many loops (bottles) that you will actually require. To do this, you will need to calculate just how much water the bottles you have can carry and determine how much you will require on your run.

As mentioned, these belts will have between one and four loops on it. Typically, it is a good idea to balance out how much weight you are carrying around your waist. For instance, if you are carrying a greater volume of water, you should distribute it between a greater number of bottles. To ensure that you are carrying the weight properly, try to always have an even number of bottles – two or four.

You should also look for belts that hold the water bottles as close to your body as possible. This way, when you are running, there will be limited movement and the bottles will not get in the way of your form.

Choosing a Race Belt

With race belts, it is a good idea to pick the lightest option available to you. The good news about these type of belts is that while they may not look as though they are able to carry much, appearances can be deceiving. Many of the pockets on the belt can expand to carry even phones.

As you can imagine, race belts are best used for instances such as marathons and triathlons. Since these belts don’t come with hydration features, they are usually not suitable for instances where water isn’t available. If you are taking part in a competition, look for belts with trailing attachment points. You can attach your race card numbers here.

What Material You Should Look For

The material that you should consider depends on several things. The first should be comfort. Now, if you will be wearing the belt against bare skin, you will probably find a Spandex/Lycra blend a great deal more comfortable. Not to mention, these materials will help to provide you with a closer fit as well. If the belt is going to be worn over clothing, then belts that are either made from polyester or nylon will prove to be just fine.

The other thing that you will need to think about is sweat. Now, you will work up quite a sweat while you are on your run which is why you need material that is moisture wicking. This type of fabric will move the moisture away from your body and to the surface where it can evaporate faster. This way, your belt will not be laden down with accumulated sweat. You should also look for patches of mesh to limit how much you will sweat. Since this fabric is lighter, it will not cause your skin to heat up as much.

Depending on the kind of running that you are doing, you may require belts made out of other types of material. For instance, if you are looking for a more durable belt that can withstand abrasions and wear and tear, you will need a special kind of material. In this case, rip-stop nylon will prove to be quite useful.

If you are the type of runner that heads out in all kinds of weather, there is a good chance that you will need a belt that is made from either water-resistant or waterproof material. A belt that is water-resistant will eventually let the moisture seep in while a waterproof belt will repel water completely. If you don’t want the belt to deteriorate due to constant exposure to UV rays, you should invest in a weatherproof belt.

Reflective Belts

Many of the running belts on the market tend to be black with hints of other colors. There are some, however, that are brightly colored or contain patches of luminescent shades. So, the question is, do you need a reflective belt?

If you like to run when it is dark out – perhaps before dawn or after dusk, then you should certainly consider a reflective belt. This is particularly important if you are running in an area that has high foot or vehicle traffic. The reflective belt will let others know your position and will warn them to avoid you and prevent collisions.

If you are running as a group, reflective or brightly colored belts can also be quite useful. It will make it a lot easier for your running mates to identify you if you happen to get separated. So, if either of these instances apply to you, you should definitely get yourself a reflective belt.

Selecting the Belt that is Right for You

In addition to the factors that are mentioned above, there are a few other things to keep in mind to help you choose the right belt. At the very top of this list would be the fit. Now, most belts are sold in a range of small, medium, and large sizes. Each belt can be adjusted within a particular set of waist sizes. Prior to shopping around for belts, you should measure the circumference of your waist. You can then compare it to each size that you come across to determine whether or not that belt can accommodate your particular size.

The other thing that you will need to figure out for yourself is just how much storage capacity you will need your belt to have. This means keeping track of what you want to take with you on your run. For instance, if you just want to carry keys and money, a race belt will probably do. On the other hand, if you want to carry a small first aid kit, phone, and other items, then a waist belt will be a much better fit for you.

These are the points to take into consideration when you are looking for a running belt for yourself.

Selected reviews

Bike Radar reviewed the Dakine Low Rider 5L

It’s hard to recommend this pack for mountain biking. It’s faffy to use and even when tightened down an uncomfortable amount it’s still prone to bouncing about, on even mildly rough terrain. Add in the rather annoying to access main storage and there’s little to like.

Posted 23 October 2016 by Jon Woodhouse – Read full review

Bike Radar reviewed the Camelbak Delaney

Weight is well supported. A nice alternative to a riding pack when it’s warm out.

Posted 27 August 2011 by Andrew Dodd – Read full review

Midwest Basecamp reviewed the Camelbak Delaney

For those of you who doubted it, who said it couldn’t be done, I am here to say you are so wrong. Camelbak has created a comfortable bottle-based waist pack (with gel flasks and storage no less!) that is ideal for running

Posted 4 November 2010 by Kovas Palubinskas – Read full review

Notes about this top 10 list

The list was last updated 19/09/2018.

The list shows the best reviewed running belts from a much bigger list of selected products. The list should not be considered a complete list of all available, excellent running belts

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.

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So far we have checked more than 2,1 million reviews!

Using our bag review summaries, we aim to help you find the perfect bag without having to spend a lot of time reading an endless list of reviews.

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