Are ankle weights helpful when you use it while doing your cardio exercises? According to an assistant professor of orthopedics named Dr. Anthony Luke, ankle weights can make your muscles work harder.
However, to achieve the benefits of ankle weights, you should first look for the best ankle weights for you. We have listed here 5 of the best ankle weights that you may be interested in purchasing.
At a Glance: Our Top Choices for the Best Ankle Weights
Healthy Model Life Ankle Weight Sets – This ankle weight is available in 1 pound, 5 pounds, and 8 pounds and is extra padded for additional comfort. It has double stitching to ensure durability and is kept in place using Velcro.
Da Vinci Ankle/Wrist Weights – This ankle/wrist weight is a durable and snug fitting band that is sweat and moisture proof. It is made of a soft cloth and is available in different color-coded resistance levels.
Valeo Adjustable Ankle/Wrist Weights – This ankle/wrist weight is specially designed to adjust to your fitness needs. Its weight sleeves are equipped with self-gripping closures, it has padding for extra comfort and has an adjustable metal D-ring double-strap closure systems.
Reviews of the Best Ankle Weights
Nordic Lifting Ankle/Wrist Weights
Are you looking for a durable and comfortable ankle/wrist weights? If you are, then the Nordic Lifting Ankle/Wrist Weights might be perfect for you as these items equipped with a pair of reliable and robust cuffs that has reinforced stitching and a Velcro strap with industrial strength.
When it comes to comfort, this product feels comfortable on your skin which means you can avoid getting abrasions or discomfort during your workout. The high level of comfort that this product offers is all thanks to Neoprene padding. You can also feel safe while using this because of the reflective thin. And thanks to the moisture wicking system, it stays locked and safe on your ankles and will probably never slip off.
Read Our Full Nordic Lifting Ankle/Wrist Weights Review
Healthy Model Life Ankle Weights Set
Do you want to look fit like the Victoria Secret Angels? This ankle weights are specially designed for women and are worn by Victoria Secret Angels so that you yourself can also feel and look like a supermodel. As it was designed for the stylish woman, it looks really trendy and the Velcro closure cuffs it around your ankle tightly yet still very comfortable.
The best part is that it knows how to take care of your skin by making sure it won’t rub or chafe your skin when you are using them. And just because they were designed for women, it does not automatically mean that men cannot use them.
Read Our Full Healthy Model Life Ankle Weights Set Review
Da Vinci Adjustable Ankle/Wrist Weights
You may not have heard of Da Vinci brand before because it really is not one of the more well-known brand names in the industry, but the manufacturer of this product produces a popular ankle weight. What makes this ankle weight so popular is that it has a very soft outer cover that feels comfortable on your ankles while the hook and loop with a Velcro trap make sure that the weights stay on your ankle.
And one of its best features is the moisture absorbing interior material that not only makes sure any excess moisture is absorbed but also prevents your legs from feeling too hot. In that sense, it also helps for healing your ankles.
Read Our Full Da Vinci Adjustable Ankle/Wrist Weights Review
Yes 4 All Comfort Fit Ankle/Wrist Weights
The manufacturer of the Yes 4 All Comfort Fit Ankle/Wrist Weights markets this product as a tool for toning muscles, burning calories and optimizing many types of workout that include running, walking and aerobics. In that sense, they come in a variety of resistance that ranges from 1 lb each to 5 lbs each, which enables you to customize your workout. That means that you can increase or decrease the weight depending on how much load your ankles can take for a particular type of workout.
And because it is made of high-quality Neoprene, you do not have to worry about it slipping off your ankles because it wicks away moisture very efficiently.
Read Our Full Yes 4 All Comfort Fit Ankle/Wrist Weights Review
Valeo Adjustable Ankle/Wrist Weights
If you want a nice-looking and trendy ankle weight, then the Valeo Adjustable Ankle/Wrists Weights come in a stylish and elegant jet black color. It can provide you with comfortable fitting and is fully adjustable which adds extra resistance to your weights or cardio workouts depending on how heavy the load you want your ankles to take. It has soft padding that can provide you with a high level of comfort and, as a result, you won’t experience any skin irritation or abrasions while using the product.
Read Our Full Valeo Adjustable Ankle/Wrist Weights Review
Benefits of using ankle weights
- You burn more calories
As mentioned, using ankle weights or adding more weight on your body will force your entire body and your muscles to exert more effort when moving. Studies even show that a group of runners were able to burn more calories with ankle weights compared to those who did not put on a pair of ankle weights. So if you want to add more value to your every workout, you might want to use ankle weights to burn more calories and to speed up your fitness goals.
- Tones the muscles in your legs
Again, because your muscles will be forced to exert more effort and to work beyond their usual capacity, you will be able to tone the legs in your muscles when wearing ankle weights during your cardio workouts. That is because your muscles will only be able to grow when there is enough resistance. You might get a lot of benefits from running without resistance but your leg muscles will eventually reach their peak if you are not using ankle weights.
- Boost your stamina and endurance
Adding more weight on your legs will force your muscles to exert more effort. As such, your heart and respiration will also increase in the process. This means that it is not only your muscles that will be working double time but also your endurance and stamina. And if you know your basic fitness, you will be able to push yourself through more difficult workouts and also endure longer runs because of how your endurance improves.
- Add versatility to your workouts
While ankle weights were mainly made for the purpose of making your runs and your cardio exercises more challenging because of the weight added to your body, they can be used for a lot of other types of workouts as well. You can use water-resistant ankle weights when swimming to improve your speed. You can also make your bodyweight workouts more challenging by using ankle weights. So if you think that your chin-ups have already reached their peak, you can become stronger by using ankle weights.
- Improve the quality and efficiency of your breathing
Improving your fitness does not only involve physical exertion. As a matter of fact, breathing exercises are a part of making sure you stay as fit as possible from an all-around perspective. In that sense, you can also add more resistance to your breathing workouts by putting ankle weights on your chest. Try resting the weights on your chest while lying down on your back and you will find yourself putting more effort into something as simple as breathing. In the long run, this will improve the efficiency of your breathing as you will be able to take in more air with every inhale.
- Improve your balance and coordination
For those looking to become more balanced and coordinated with their movements, using ankle weights can help. This is because you are regularly using small ankle muscles that find it hard to balance your entire body weight on a daily basis. However, you can strengthen those muscles by adding weight on them. You do not even have to exercise. Just by wearing the ankle weights during your daily activities can already make a difference in helping improve your balance and coordination. However, if you are using them during your workouts, make sure that you warm your muscles up first so as to avoid shocking them.
What are the things you should consider finding the best ankle weights?
Ankle weights are a great help for your workout as it can help you improve it by speeding up muscle toning and fat burning process.
There are a lot of options available in the market, and if you are looking for the best ankle weight for you, then you should consider the following:
The most important thing that you should find in purchasing ankle weights is the weight of the product. If this is the first time for you in buying or using ankle weights, you should start with something small or loads that are not too heavy. You can choose weights that are around 1 lb or 1.5 pounds to jump start your weights workout.
However, if you feel stronger and have fairly developed muscles, you can start with ankle weights that weigh 3 or 5 pounds. Make sure that you would use enough weight because too little or too much pressure can have zero to a minimum effect on your muscles.
Also, ankle weights that allow you to adjust the weight are some of the best. That is because you no longer have to purchase different sets if you want to change the resistance level on your ankle weights. You can just simply remove or add weights on the pouches of the ankle weights if you want to increase or decrease the resistance level on your ankles. This saves you a lot of money.
Ankle weights should be adjustable so it can be versatile and can be used as wrist weights as well. Ankle weights usually use Velcro straps to fasten the weights in place. Since adjustability is very important, you should also make sure that the tightening mechanism of the product has a versatile adjustment. With the adjustability feature, it will be easier for you to use it either as wrist weights or ankle weights. Moreover, different people require varying levels of adjustability.
Tip: It is safe to buy ankle weights that have large and extra-strong Velcro pads because it will last longer and can ensure that the weights stay in place while you move around.
Another feature that you should consider is the comfort level of the product. Your ankle weights should be flexible and soft but should also have durability and should be heavy duty as well. You don’t want to buy another set once the product shows sign of wear and tear, do you?
In addition to that, your ankle weights should be equipped with a soft inner lining that can prevent scratching or abrasions on your skin. The weights should securely and snuggly fit around your ankles and should not bounce around.
- Material quality
A good ankle weight should be made from high-quality materials that do not easily tear up if you use them during one of your intense workout sessions. They should be able to survive and hold on for a long time because fitness is a long-term process.
After all, you do not want to regularly to buy a new pair of ankle weights every time your old one begins wearing down just after a few weeks or months of usage.
- Moisture wicking
If you want to stay focused on your workouts without having to worry about sweat and moisture making your ankle weights slippery, then you should go for a product that has a moisture wicking feature. This makes sure that the ankle weights stay on your ankles the entire time even though you are already sweating buckets from one your more intense workouts.
When you are working out and running long distances for an extended period of time, your body temperature will gradually increase as your body is exerting more effort. On a particularly hot day, you might even find yourself heating up even more and you might notice your ankles heating faster than the rest of your body because of the ankle weights you have on. As such, you will eventually tire or even break down faster.
To avoid such a predicament, choose an ankle weight that has a breathable fabric or one that absorbs moisture and distributes it on your ankle so that your ankle stays as cool as possible even when you are going through a tough workout session.
Finally, who wouldn’t want to stay stylish while wearing ankle weights? A good ankle weight should be able to keep up with your own personal fitness fashion and should not look ugly on your ankles. You might think that the rest of the workout outfit looks trendy and stylish but, at the end of the day, your entire look gets sabotaged by chunky and ugly looking sandbags on your ankles. So, if possible, look for ankle weights that look good.
At the very least, try to look for something that isn’t too striking or distracting. That way, your ankle weights won’t tend to attract too much attention away from the rest of your sporty and trendy look.
When should you use ankle weights?
Ankle weights have several uses, and here are the most commonly used of ankle weights:
Did you know that ankle weights can be a useful tool in stretching your muscles? You can use this product to add extra gravity to stretch your muscles before your workout effectively. Keep in mind that stretching is a vital pre-workout routine. Failure to do some stretching can make the workout useless and may lead to injury. With ankle weights, you can stretch efficiently and appropriately without the stress.
- Toning muscles
You can also use ankle weights to tone your muscles. You can use them during your aerobic or cardio workout, or even during weightlifting exercises for an additional challenge. Ankle weights are suitable for people who don’t have time for a workout. All you have to do is to wear these anywhere so it can provide you a continuous exercise. While you are wearing the ankle weights, you are slowly toning your muscles and help your muscles look the way you wanted it to.
- Strength and endurance training
Ankle weights are a great addition to your strength and endurance training. Lifting weights can strengthen your muscles, but lifting weights while wearing ankle weights can add to the challenge and improve your strength.
Wearing weights while doing aerobic or cardio exercises can also improve your endurance. Running with the added weight is more laborious, thus pushing your muscles to work more.
After recovering from an injury that prevented you from exercising your legs for long periods of time, you might find that your legs are a lot weaker than before. In that sense, you need to rehabilitate your muscles to get them back to their top form. One of the best ways of doing such is by using ankle weights.
Ankle weights will aid in gradually bringing back your legs’ former strength even without putting a lot of strain on your leg muscles. You can go through walking exercises and simple strengthening workouts while using ankle weights to help improve the rate of your legs’ rehabilitation.
- Bodyweight workouts
If your only strength training exercises are bodyweight workouts such as push-ups, chin-ups, sit-ups, and any other similar exercises, you will eventually find yourself hitting a peak that is difficult to break through unless you increase your resistance. But not everyone has enough money for a gym membership or for dumbbells that can improve your resistance training.
In such a case, the best way to improve your strength while doing bodyweight exercises is to actually add more weight to your body. You can use ankle weights to gradually and steadily add more weight on your entire body so that you can still see strength improvements while you are going through your bodyweight workouts.
Upon comparing those five ankle weights, we conclude that the best ankle weights are the Nordic Lifting Ankle/Wrist Weights.
It is adjustable and comfortable to use. It can be used by both non-newbie and newbie as the resistance levels range from 2 lbs to 6 lbs.
It is suitable for men, women, and kids. It even has a carrying bag included.
It has one size fits all feature, just like the Da Vinci and Valeo, but those two are too heavy if you are a beginner. It has a sturdy and adjustable Velcro pad that ensures fit and ensures that the product will stay in its place as well.