The Hyperwear Hyper Vet Elite is a unique weight vest with a form-fitting design. It’s available up to 20 pounds and is ideal for running, CrossFit WODs, loaded push-ups, pull-ups, and more.
Who It’s Right For
Things to Consider
The Hyperwear Hyper Vest Elite is one of the most unique weight vests on the market.
Unlike plate carriers and other vests, the Hyperwear Vest hugs the body with a flexible and breathable design.
As someone who has reviewed numerous weight vests, there’s nothing quite like it.
However, it’s not for everyone.
While I think this vest excels in some areas, it lacks in others.
In this review, we’ll take a close look at the Hyper Vest Elite. I’ll share the pros, cons, and everything in between. By the end, you should be able to tell if it’s right for you.
Let’s dig in.
Hyperwear Hyper Vest Elite
The Hyper Vest Elite is a unique, form-fitting weight vest. It's excellent for running and is available in several weight options.
- Type: Weight Plugs
- Weight Options: Up to 20 lbs
- Material: Cordura
- Size Range: Small, Medium, Large, and X-Large
- Color: Black
Hyperwear is best known for their weighted vests and unique workout sandbags. In addition to the Elite vest, they make the Pro and Fit vests, which I’ll compare below.
The Elite is their high-end offering, with premium Cordura construction and better overall materials.
I’ve been using the Hypervest Elite since 2021 – it’s easily my favorite for running and high-intensity conditioning, but I prefer other vests for strength training.
Let’s have a look at the specs and jump into the review.
- Base Weight: 10 lbs (loaded)
- Weight Options: Up to 20 lbs
- Weight Increments: 2.25 lbs
- Material: Cordura
- Size Range: Small, Medium, Large, X-Large
- Enclosure Type: Zipper
- Color Options: Black
The Hyper Vest Elite is generally well-made, but there are a couple of important considerations.
The first thing to note is that the vest is constructed with Cordura, which is the gold standard for weight vests. This nylon material has a strong reputation for being durable and is well-suited for fitness.
However, this vest uses a much thinner denier than others, like the Rogue Plate Carrier. While this creates a noticeably more flexible and breathable vest, it doesn’t have the same level of durability.
I recommend other vests if you perform intense and dynamic training, especially outdoor races like Tough Mudders, Spartan Races, etc.
The stitching is consistent throughout, but I’d like to see reinforcements in high-stress areas like the weight pockets. Although each weight is relatively light, some users have reported cases where the stitching has come undone on some pockets. While I haven’t experienced this in my testing, I can see where this could occur if you’re training with high intensity.
Hyperwear added a YKK zipper to the front of this vest, which I think is a smart decision. YKK zippers are known for their durability and performance, and I’ve been pleased with this feature of the vest. It glides smoothly, stays in position, and has held up nicely.
Overall, this is a well-made vest that should last years, depending on frequency and intensity.
The Hyper Vest Elite uses dozens of small steel weight plates on the front and back. Honestly, I’m not a big fan. The biggest downside is that they’re downright challenging to get in and out of the individual pouches.
While these tight pouches are great for securing the plates, they make adjustments painstaking and frustrating. Because of this, most people will pick their weight and stick with it for everything.
You can buy the Elite in base weights of 10, 15, and 20 pounds. You can also buy extra steel weights to expand the weight capacity. The extra-large can expand to 25 lbs, but the others max out at 20 lbs (15 lbs for the small).
Comfort & Sizing
No other weight vest fits like the Hyperwear vest. While others are bulky and fairly boxy, the Hyper Vest feels like an article of clothing. It truly hugs the body, which greatly reduces bounce during training. It’s also very flexible, allowing for a variety of dynamic movements.
You can buy this vest in four sizes based on your height and weight. I’m 5’8″, 165 lbs, and the medium fits me nicely. I recommend sizing up if you’re between sizes since you can use the elastic side bands to tighten the vest. Otherwise, you risk buying a vest that feels too restrictive.
While I like the elastic bands for creating a tighter fit, they can be a little distracting. Firstly, if you have to tighten them too much, you’ll have extra string swinging around, which can be noticeable during some movements.
Secondly, you may feel the plastic hooks depending on how tight you make the vest and what exercise you’re performing. You may also feel the individual weight bars as the vest flexes to accommodate the movement.
With the lighter Cordura fabric and open sides, the Hyper Vest Elite is absolutely the most breathable vest I’ve used. I generally like the overall comfort, but some people and body types may prefer a looser-fitting vest.
Working Out with the Hyper Vest Elite
Because of the form-fitting design, the Hypwear Elite is excellent for running, walking, and other conditioning workouts. There’s no distracting bouncing that can occur with traditional weight vests, and it’s easy to take on and off.
I also like this vest for adding weight to traditional bodyweight exercises like push-ups and pull-ups. There’s no sag, and again, it’s easy to take on and off.
The biggest downside is that the weight capacity is lower than most. If you’re looking for a vest you can grow with and progressively overload, I recommend a plate carrier or heavier vest.
That said, since you can set this vest to 20 lbs, it’s great for the popular CrossFit Murph and other WODs.
Unlike many other vests, the Hyper Vest Elite only comes in one color: black. The adjustable side laces provide a pop of orange, but it otherwise has a simple aesthetic.
The reflective elements along the zipper and top two rows of plate pouches serve a practical safety purpose and also look nice.
I like the logo patches on both sides, but I would love to see some color options, especially on the Cordura shell. If nothing else, different color choices for the laces could add some extra flair.
Starting at nearly $200, this is one of the higher-priced weight vests on the market. It’s on par with the 5.11 TacTec Carrier, but you don’t get as much weight capacity, and it’s not as heavy-duty.
This is a high-quality weight vest, but for the money, I tend to recommend others unless you see the value in the form-fitting design.
The Hyperwear Hyper Vest Elite has hundreds of reviews at Amazon, Rogue, and Hyperwear. Generally, the feedback is very positive, with the fit easily being the most popular feature. Most negative reviews stemmed from side comfort and the frustrating process of changing plates. Users were mostly pleased with performance and quality, but some pointed to the high price as being a negative.
Hyper Vest Elite vs. Hyper Vest Pro
The Hyper Vest Pro is a slightly more economical option in the Hyperwear weighted vest line, with several key differences from the Elite.
While the Elite vest is built with Cordura fabric, the Pro has a breathable fabric with a Tyvek base layer. Generally, the Elite vest is more durable and easier to clean.
However, a benefit of the stretchable Pro fabric is that it has a larger weight capacity since you can double up the plates inside some pouches. If you want to introduce heavier loads and wear at least a medium size, the Pro may be a better option. Refer to the chart below for the capacity breakdown.
Aesthetically, the Pro vest has a heathered gray and black scheme, while the Elite has a black and orange combo. I prefer the Elite’s look, but this is purely subjective.
In terms of the base price, The Pro vest is less expensive. Unlike the Elite, the Pro is only available with a base weight of 10 lbs, costing around $20 less. To add weight, you need to purchase additional plates. Depending on how many plates to add, the Pro vest may cost more than the Elite.
Ultimately, I recommend the Elite vest unless you need the higher weight capacity. Hyperwear also sells the Hyper Vest Fit, which is specifically designed for women.
Pros and Cons
The Hyper Vest Elite is a solid weight vest with unique features and an excellent fit.
I recommend it mostly to runners looking to introduce load to their training. The low-bounce, flexible design works well and is more comfortable for longer runs than conventional vests.
However, I don’t recommend it for individuals looking to strength train unless you don’t need anything over 20 lbs.
Even still, there are less expensive weight vests and plate carriers that will get the job done just as well.