5.11 Tactec Plate Carrier

9.3 score
[Editors rating (9.3)] = (Garage Gym Ideas - Ultimate Home Gym Design) score (9.3)/10

Editor rating: 9.3 / 10
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Editor’s Conclusion
If your bodyweight workouts are getting a little too easy, you can either increase your reps or add some weights to your workout. The 5.11 Tactec Plate Carrier is a great way to easily add some extra weight to your workouts while looking cool as you do it!

What’s great about this unique plate vest is that it sits flat up against your body which makes it great for running, stair sprints, push-ups, sit-ups, as well as a myriad of other exercises.

If you feel that your basic bodyweight routines are just a little too easy, popping on a little extra weight can help build muscle and shed calories much more quickly.

It boasts a lightweight frame that you can load up with flat weights that are specifically designed for this style of vest, and the open sides hug your body while promoting maximum airflow to keep you nice and cool. It’s easy to pop on and adjust, and just as easy to snap off at the end of your set.

Below, I wanted to take a deep dive into the advanced features that make the 5.11 Tactec Plate Carrier worth checking out.
Editor's Pros & Cons

Adjustable shoulder straps help create a perfect fit
Skeletal side frame for maximum breathability
Rugged 500D nylon is comfortable and breathable
Addition padding inside of the vest
Easy to unhook when you are finished with your workout
Easy to add weights to side panels
Include a Grab-Drag handle


Custom plates not included
Not compatible with Olympic-size weight plates

Key Features


The 5.11 Tactec Plate Carrier is a great addition to your WODs or bodyweight exercises that are becoming a little stale. If you are able to knock out 20 sets of pull-ups or push-ups without even breaking a sweat, it may be time to add a little additional weight.

This vest works by adding weighted plates to the front chest and on the back panel to add a new level of intensity to your exercise routine.

What’s great about this vest is that it fits tightly against your body, which offers you a full range of motion and a tight yet comfortable fit.

Many users that wear this plate carrier engage in CrossFit or WODs. What I love most about this vest is that it boasts adjustable straps that fit your body like a glove.

Sure, it’s great for things like push-ups or pull-ups, but it’s also great for running on the treadmill or around the neighborhood.

With a little extra weight added to your pack, a simple walk around the neighborhood is far more engaging and works to build and tone muscle.


This plate carrier is only offered in one size, but most users found that tinkering with the adjustable straps allowed them to craft the perfect fit. It is built with a large front panel and a wide back panel to load up flat plates.

Users can easily slip the vest over their head and secure it in place with the straps. When your workout is over, simply pull on the quick-release buckles and the vest can easily be removed.

At first, I was a little concerned that this vest wasn’t offered in multiple sizing options. However, after combing through hundreds of reviews, many of the previous users found that this pack fit them like a glove.

The unique design on the front and rear panels with the stretchy open sides work to accommodate every body type.

Whether you are small and lean or built like a tank, making adjustments to the straps helps to create the perfect fit for your unique body type.


It’s important to note that this plate carrier doesn’t include plates. On its own, it only weighs in at 2.5 pounds.

Due to its unique size that is designed to fit snugly against your body, it only works with a very specific design of plate and isn’t large enough for standard Olympic-sized plates.

This design works best with Rogues vest plates that are offered in 3.75, 5.75, and 8.75-pound plates. You can opt to place just one plate in the front pocket, or double up with a plate in the front and back.

The maximum weight capacity of this design clocks in at around 17.5 pounds, plus the additional 2.5 pounds of the vest.

If you want to add a little more weight to your pack, you can also purchase side panels for an additional cost. I suggest opting for the TacTec weight plate sandbags that cinch easily onto the sides of the vest for added weight that still feels natural and never cumbersome.


If a plate carrier isn’t comfortable, you will be less likely to wear it. I once bought a budget-friendly plate carrier, and it was so uncomfortable I would rather carry a 45-pound plate in my hands as I ran stair sprints rather than strap that uncomfortable contraption to my body!

What’s great about this plate carrier is that it is super comfortable and won’t bounce around on your chest like other designs. It utilizes specially made Rogue plates that secure tightly into the pack, and contour to the shape of your chest and to your back.

What I also love about this design is that it provides a good deal of padding where you need it most.

The inside of the carrier offers users modest padding that contours to your frame, and prevents the interior plate from digging into your skin.

The design also helps to evenly distribute the weight on your torso to keep you light on your feet for quick drills.

The shoulder straps are also incredibly comfortable, and allow you to make adjustments to create that perfect fit.

Combined with the flexible skeleton-style side caging, this pack fights tightly and securely, and won’t bounce around on you as you train.


Many plate carriers have a reputation for being hot and uncomfortable, yet the 5.11 Tactec Plate Carrier is surprisingly breathable.

What makes this pack much more breathable when compared to competitors is the design of the pack and the materials used.

This pack has open side panels with a skeletal construction that holds tightly to your sides, yet allows air to easily circulate to keep you cool and dry.

What also makes this pack incredibly breathable is that the front and back of this design offer users padded air-flow channels to help circulate hot air and wick away moisture.

It’s composed of rugged lightweight 500D nylon that wicks moisture away from your body where it evaporates quickly on the surface to keep you cool and comfortable as you train.


What makes this vest unique when compared to other plate carriers is that it boasts something called a Grab-Drag handle.

While it’s designed for emergency exfiltration in tactical scenarios, it’s also great for spicing up your workouts. I've seen many CrossFitters use this grab handle to pull a partner for sprint drag-and-carries.

One person lies on the floor, and the other uses the grab handle to drag their dead weight across the floor for a great compound movement that engages your entire body. Plus, it’s pretty fun for the person being dragged as well!


The downside of this amazing plate carrier is that it is quite expensive. Compared to similar designs out there on the market (that aren’t quite as tough or breathable), it will make a significant dent in your bank account. Plus, it also requires you to buy the weight plates separately.

Due to the fact that this design requires a very specific design of plates offered from Rogue, this vest can get very expensive. A pair of 8.75-pound plates that fit into this vest cost about half as much as the vest itself.

If you want to add more weight to the sides, that will also cost you a bit more as well.


If you are on the hunt for one of the best plate carriers out there on the market, the 5.11 Tactec Plate Carrier is an excellent choice. It’s important to note that this pack is quite expensive, and demands a separate investment in plates.

It requires that users buy specifically made Rogue plates that fit securely into the provided pockets, and these plates are a little more expensive than your average Olympic-size plates. If you can swing the higher price point, this set is well worth every penny.

A good plate carrier is a must-have for those that like to focus primarily on bodyweight exercises and CrossFit.

If you find that you can knock out multiple sets of pull-ups without even breaking a sweat, it’s time that you increase the difficulty. You can either add weight to your frame by pounding milkshakes or investing in this plate carrier.

Drinking milkshakes may be the most enjoyable way to add difficulty to your bodyweight exercises, but the 5.11 Tactec Plate Carrier is the most efficient (and better for your overall health!)