Are you thinking about buying ankle weights?
Ankle weights are a type of workout gear that you might have seen online or at the gym.
They are more common than you might think and have a range of applications when it comes to improving strength, muscle, endurance, and weight loss.
If you are wondering whether ankle weights are worth buying, you have come to the right place!
This guide explains what ankle weights are used for, the benefits of ankle weights, and more.
To conclude, we also round up the pros and cons of ankle weights so you can decide whether ankle weights are good and worth buying as your next fitness investment.
What Are Ankle Weights Used For?
What are ankle weights used for exactly?
It is obvious that ankle weights are worn around the ankles, but what does this do and what are the benefits of wearing ankle weights?
Put simply, ankle weights add weight to the ankles to increase the difficulty of different exercises. They can be worn while running, and performing other cardio exercises, as well as during resistance training.
By increasing the difficulty of these exercises, ankle weights force the person wearing them to expend more energy, resulting in faster weight loss (fat burn), increased strength, and improved endurance and stamina.
Ankle weights are available in different weight amounts – typically up to 10 lbs for a single ankle weight – with a one-size-fits-all design that generally attaches to the ankle using an adjustable Velcro strap.
Running And Cardio
Ankle weights can be worn while running and performing cardiovascular exercises, but it is not their only use.
While running, ankle weights will increase the challenge of the run, since the feet will be heavier to lift. This will improve endurance and stamina, as well as build muscle and strength.
The same applies to wearing ankle weights while performing cardio exercises such as skipping, cycling (safely on an exercise bike), elliptical training, jumping jacks, mountain climbers, and more.
Ankle weights can also be worn during resistance training, which is, essentially, any exercise that is performed for repetitions and sets to build muscle and strength.
Resistance exercises where ankle weights can be worn include leg raises, knee raises, Russian twists, reverse hyperextensions, lunges, donkey kicks, leg curls, one-leg planks, pull-ups, and more.
As a result, ankle weights are beneficial for building muscle and strength in the quads, glutes, hamstrings, abs and core, glutes, lower back, and lats.
The Benefits Of Ankle Weights
Ankle weights have a range of benefits depending on the way they are used. As explained above, ankle
weights can be used to increase the difficulty of cardio exercises and resistance training exercises, both of which offer similar, and individual, benefits.
To summarize the above, the benefits of ankle weights include:
- strengthening leg muscles
- strengthening core muscles and developing abs
- strengthening leg joints
- can be used at home and at the gym
- affordable for most people
- available in different weights, including adjustable weights
- available in different designs
- easy to use – adjustable via a Velcro strap to fit all sizes
Are Ankle Weights Good?
So, are ankle weights good?
If used correctly in exercises that benefit from adding weight to the ankles, then ankle weights are good and can provide a number of advantages if your goal is to build strength, muscle, stamina, and endurance.
Ankle weights can also help for weight loss in cardio exercises and resistance training, as they increase the difficulty of the exercise, and therefore the overall energy demand, which will help to deliver greater results.
Will Walking With Ankle Weights Tone My Legs?
The simple answer is… not effectively. Walking with ankle weights to tone your legs, even if you wear heavy ankle weights all day, will ultimately not be worth it.
Results will be slow, if any, and wearing heavy ankle weights while walking will only serve as a hindrance.
Even if you are wearing the ankle weights at home as you walk around the house, this would not be ideal. You may even fall or injure yourself.
The best way to use ankle weights is during exercise, which will prove more effective across a shorter usage period.
Will Ankle Weights Work For Weight Loss?
Yes! Ankle weights can be used while running or performing cardiovascular exercises, such as jumping jacks (star jumps), skipping, high knee taps, mountain climbers, and more, increasing the difficulty and energy demand.
Overall, ankle weights can help you to burn fat and lose weight at a faster rate.
By increasing the difficulty of cardiovascular exercises, ankle weights elevate your heart rate. And the faster your heart rate is, the more calories you are effectively burning.
The Pros And Cons Of Ankle Weights
To conclude, here are the pros and cons of ankle weights.
If you are on the fence about buying ankle weights, these pros and cons might help you to make a final decision.
- strengthens leg muscles, joints, core muscles/abs, and back muscles
- can be used at home and taken to the gym
- affordable for most
- available in different weights, including fixed weights and adjustable weight amounts
- easy to use and put on – fastened via an adjustable Velcro strap
- adjustable ankle weights (ankle weights with pockets for adding and removing weights) can be bulky and cumbersome to wear, specifically when most of the weight is removed for certain exercises, such as jogging
The short answer? Ankle weights are good fitness tools and can provide a host of benefits if your goal is to lose weight,
improve stamina and endurance, and increase muscle and strength in your legs, glutes, lower back, core, and abdominal muscles.
Ankle weights are affordable, versatile, and easy to use, and can be worn while running or performing cardio exercises and resistance training exercises.
There are more pros than cons to ankle weights, so, if you have the budget, go ahead and purchase a pair online or from your local fitness store!