Best Ankle Weights Review 2019
Finding that right piece of equipment to work on your lower leg muscles can be quite a task, especially if you just got into the whole strength training business. This is especially true if you lead a busy life, and have no time to think about which machine you should buy t help you stay fit.
If you’re looking for a way to ramp up the intensity of your workouts, ankle weights are a smart option. These convenient, weighted, Velcro-fastened bands can be used for virtually any exercise. Without doing any more work, you’ll be able to burn more calories, increase your resistance, get stronger muscles, and improve your cardiovascular fitness. In this article, we showcase the 9 best ankle weights on the 2019 market.
- Nordic Lifting
- Sportneer Adjustable
- HealthyModelLife Set
- All Pro
- Shoung Reflective
- Zensufu Pair
- Da Vinci Adjustable
- TheraBand Comfort
- Criteria Used for Evaluation
- Other Factors to Consider
- Frequently Asked Questions
Top 10 Picks
1. Nordic Lifting
Stable On Skin
Carry Bag Included
A Little Bulky
The Nordic Lifting ankle straps provide you with a pair of very strong, stable cuffs that feature reinforced stitching and an industrial strength velcro strap. These ankle weights are comfortable on the skin, meaning that you won’t have to contend with abrasions or another discomfort during your workout.Read more
These weights also provide you with reflective trim to keep you safe at night. Neoprene padding provides you with a high level of comfort. Nordic Lifting weights have a built-in moisture wicking system so that you won’t have any problems with seat slippage. One size fits all. Adjustable Velcro and double “D” hooks work together to ensure that you get a secure, custom fit. These ankle weights are comfortable on the skin, meaning that you won’t have to contend with abrasions or another discomfort during your workout. CAP Barbell weights have a built-in moisture wicking system so that you won’t have any problems with seat slippage. One size fits all. At 10 pounds per leg, these are among the heaviest resistance ankle weights on the market.
2. Sportneer Adjustable
Filled With Sand
Weights Difficult To Remove
This great pair of ankle weights comes in a pair, that weights anything from 1-7 pounds in total. The weights have five individual packs filled with sand meant to give you a challenge. The weights can be adjusted for increased resistance.Read more
The velcro straps provide an adjustable fit and are 10.5-inches long so they can wrap around your legs firmly and safely. As the pockets are removable, you can gradually add the weight on until you are comfortable with the full weight, making them a piece of equipment you will be able to use for a long time. A warranty card is included with the set.
3. HealthyModelLife Set
Extra Level Of Padding
Sure Stay Velcro Grip
Designed For Women
Straps Slightly Short
Stronger Adjustable Ankle weights are specifically designed to allow women to add some extra resistance to their workout. It features an extra level of padding and is ergonomically molded to allow you to focus on glute and hamstring work during a workout.Read more
They are fastened by way of sure stay Velcro grip, so you’ll never have to contend with slipping cuffs. These cuffs can be used to add weight to both your ankles and your wrists during your workout. Stronger and adjustable cuffs come with a 100% lifetime replacement or refund guarantee. That underscores the confidence you can have that these ankle weights will do the job you need over the long term.
No Metal Buckle
Padded For Extra Comfort
Only One Weight Option
The Gaiam ankle weights are a pair that individually weight 2.5 pounds, racking up a total of five pounds. If you are a beginner, you might struggle with them since they are on the heavy side, but you can always work harder to get to their level - they are not so demanding.Read more
The Gaiam weights are super comfy and fit both genders equally. The design is adjustable, and they stay right where you tell them to, even with rigorous exercises. There are no metal buckles to rub your skin and no gaps between the material where a strap could irritate you. They are definitely super comfy and have a secure velcro closure.
5. All Pro
Bright Fluorescent Color
Available In Four Weights
All Pro Ankle weights are a premium quality set that weighs 5 pounds each. They come in a bright fluorescent blue color. These ankle weights feature a cushioned flap which has been ergonomically designed to protect your ankles, while also permitting a full range of movement during your workout.Read more
The ankle weights in this set are adjustable in half-pound increments, meaning that you can load them at any resistance from a half pound to five pounds. The All Pro features ankle padding and heel padding, making this an incredibly comfortable set of ankle weights. They are easy to run in and simple to take on and off before and after your workout. They are suitable for your cardio workout or other high-impact exercises.
6. Shoung Reflective
Will Not Cause Rashes
Keeps You Safe
High Quality Hook-and-Loop
Metal Rubs Skin
These weights are quite popular amongst walkers and joggers, and there are many reasons that they take that place. They can also be used to make Yoga and Pilates harder, and even for cardio and aerobics.Read more
These come as a set of two, with weights varying between 1 and 10 pounds. If you like to walk or jog in the early hours of the morning or when the sun sets, you should be glad to know that these weights have a reflective strip which will keep you safe from harm, and visible in the darkest of nights. The material which will be hugging your skin is soft and absorbent, leaving you dry and rash free. The straps are very adjustable and can accommodate all shapes and sizes.
7. Zensufu Pair
Comes With Black Pouch
Soft And Durable Fabric
Weights Not Adjustable
Zensufu leg cuffs are specifically built to allow female trainers to maximize their training and exercising. They are rugged and durable ankle weights and come in a form-fitting style that fits easily.Read more
These ankle weights are also very comfortable, providing you with a natural, easy feel against the skin. The fabric is very durable so you can be confident that they will last for a long time. An adjustable strap ensures that you get a tight, custom fit for every workout including high-impact exercise. Zensufu cuffs are available in 1, 2, 3 and 5-pound options. The ankle weights cannot be adjusted. There is a little black pouch included in which you can put the weight in so you can carry it around with you wherever you go.
8. Da Vinci Adjustable
Soft Cloth Material
Snug, Tight Fit
Fabric Not Durable
DaVinci Adjustable cuffs are made of soft cloth material which provides a comfortable fit without the skin irritation that comes with many other models. They do a great job of absorbing moisture and wicking away sweat during a workout.Read more
When you fasten the ankle weights, the soft material stretches to provide you with a very snug, tight fit; this ensures that the ankle weights stay in place while you are exercising. These ankle weights come in a variety of colors and resistance levels. Da Vinci weights are versatile enough that they can also be used as wrist weights, as well as ankle weights, and are ideal for adding resistance to your workout sessions. They are equally suitable for taking your high-impact exercise and cardio sessions outdoors.
9. TheraBand Comfort
Soft Terry Cloth Inner
Color Coded Resistances
Portable And Easy To Store
Thera-band comfort fit cuffs are custom fit with a sleep neoprene outer surface. Each cuff weights two and a half pounds. These cuffs feature a fully adjustable strap to allow you to get a custom fit.Read more
The soft, terry cloth inner lining feels very comfortable against the skin. Thera-band also does a great job of absorbing moisture and preventing sweat slippage. These cuffs are non-abrasive, so they remain comfortable during your workout. Thera-band comfort cuffs have a reflective trim to keep you visible and safe when you’re out at night. They are easy to put on and take off. You have the option of three color-coded resistances, ranging from two pounds to five pounds for each ankle weight.
Sweat And Moisture Absorbing
Filled With Iron Shot
Two Year Warranty
Strap Rubs Ankles
Reehut Ankle and wrist cuffs offer you a range of resistances in their stylish, comfortable range of ankle/wrist weights. You can choose from 1, 1.5 and 2-pound color-coded cuffs.Read more
They are well padded and feature a generous amount of very strong Velcro for a secure fastening, so they stay put during even a vigorous workout. They are made from a heavy-duty mercerized cotton blend. These ankle weights do a great job of wicking away sweat and absorbing moisture. They are also odor absorbing. The material is soft, breathable and not as scratchy as other weights can be. The adjustable strap closure is easy to work with and can be used to adapt the fit instantly. The weights are filled with iron shot, which adds more resistance to your regime. They come with a two-year warranty.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
If you never encountered ankle weights before, you may be wondering about how to use them. Ankle weights are super popular with walkers, even though experts recommend against doing this because they can alter your gait. Instead, they are best used for building muscles on your lower body. They might seem like a pretty straightforward piece of gym equipment, but if you do not inspect the properly, put them on the wrong way you can hurt yourself.
As we said, you must first inspect the ankle weights before you wrap them around your limbs. You must make sure that all seams are intact, and that all pouches and flaps for adding extra weight are securely closed. If your set is adjustable, this is the moment when you should add or remove the extra weight until it is right for you.
Wrap each weight around your leg, firmly. Ideally, the weights should be snug around your lower legs. They should be snug enough that they don’t move around, but not so tight that they cut off your circulation or feel uncomfortable. Tighten the straps so that they don’t move around. If you do not like the way the weights feel when resting on your skin, you can always wear socks underneath them, or put them on top of your pants for an extra layer between the skin and the pair.
Once they are secure around your legs, you can then start using them to perform exercises. You can perform leg curls when they are strapped around your legs or donkey kicks. You should progress just like when doing any other exercise with weights. Once you are able to complete the targeted number of repetitions with a good form, you are ready to move on to heavier weights.
Ankle weights are a great way to help you increase the variability and the variety of your exercise routine. You can use ankle weights to add to a stationary exercise like lleg raises and leg lifts. You can also use ankle weights to add some more weight and resistance while you are walking, jogging, or running to improve your leg muscle.
Ankle weights can help to improve your overall level of endurance, and this added endurance can further help with your cardiovascular and pulmonary health during your workout routine. Ankle weights can also help tone your legs while doing leg lifts in which there is some resistance during a glute workout. The more weight you add during leg lifts and a glute workout, the more endurance you will face. Gradually adding weight will help improve the shape of your legs. To do this, an adjustable ankle weight is ideal so you can control the amount of weight you are using so your legs will work harder and help you burn more calories in the process.
Ankle weights can benefit you by allowing you to burn more calories because you are facing a bit more force, which requires more energy. A workout is more effective when weight is adding to the overall endurance and resistance.
Water workouts can also benefit from ankle weights, and even wrist weights and swimmers have been known to use them to enhance their current skills and strengthen their endurance while in the water. Water aerobic workouts can greatly benefit from the use of wrist and ankle weights for additional resistance for their strength and endurance training exercises. Again, adjustable ankle and wrist weights are always ideal.
Although ankle weights come with several advantages during a workout, it is also recommended that you do not wear them for every single workout session. It is best to let your muscles and joints rest for a bit between ankle weight and wrist weight training so that you do not potentially cause any harm or injury later.
Before you actually start working with the weights, there are a few things you should keep in mind. You first need to make sure that you are healthy enough to begin using them. If you suffer from rheumatoid arthritis or any other joint disease, using the weights can actually inflame your joints and create additional damage and pain. This is especially troublesome if you didn’t secure them properly, because the weights will wiggle around your joints and move them around in their sockets, making things even more painful.
One more thing that could be a potential hazard is ligament tears. If you are not comfortable with the weight you set, do not keep at it. Start from a smaller weight, and work your way up to heavier loads. Do not be a macho man and start heavy right away - this is a surefire recipe for ending up in the ER. If you are noticing more pain than usual after your session, it’s possible that you have injured yourself. You need to rest the whole day, or even more once you start to feel this, and lower the number of weights you work with until you are back to your old self.
Now let’s get to why you probably shouldn’t wear ankle weights when you walk or jog. It is true that ankle weights can make you burn more calories when you run or jog, but they can also pull on your ankle joint. When this happens, you could possibly injure the major ligaments in your hips, knees, and back. If you really want to wear weights when doing cardio, your best bet is to consult a professional. The weight could also injure your knees. The reason for this is the same - the added weight puts stress on the surrounding muscles and ligaments. Wearing ankle weights also changes your gait, as we noted before, meaning that your muscles and ligaments will be forced to work differently, which creates stress for your tissues, and again could hurt you.
Ankle weights are usually made out of the same materials, and filled with either sand, water, or iron. The casing of the weights can be made out of reinforced cotton, a polyester blend, and terry cloth. All of these materials serve to create a comfy fit for you, while being breathable, moisture absorbing and moisture wicking. Cotton is natural, but when used alone it tends to sprout holes and tears quickly, which is not ideal when the weight filling is spillable. When combined with polyester though, it becomes sturdy and durable. The cotton leaves enough room for the warm air to escape, and for the cool in to get inside and keep you sweat and odor free. And speaking of sweat, polyester is great at moisture wicking and absorbing, which keeps you dry and rash free.
Sand is possibly the most common filling found in these weights. They are breathable and comfortable, and the amount of filling can be easily changed. The sand tends to mold to the shape of your foot, which makes it even more comfortable. The amount of weight you have will always remain the same, unless the pouch ruptures, then you will have no weight at all. Water ankle weights can also mold to the shape of your foot, making it super cozy. But water can sometimes escape through the holes, and it’s tough to refill the pouches. Also, if the pouch breaks, you can say goodbye to your weights. Iron filings are definitely the most popular choice. They are small, compact and pliable, and can be easily removed or added to change the weight.
The fit of the ankle weight is quite important since you will be wearing it on your body during your whole session. The fit is, most of the times, adjustable. This means that the weights have a type of closure present to make things easier.
Most of the times, the closure is simply velcro. This means that you can tighten and loosen the fit as much as you want. But that type of closure can actually break open easily, especially when you push yourself to the limits, which is not that convenient. This is why there is usually a metal loop through which you’d pull a velcro strap and then tighten it as much as you want. This is super convenient, but there could be some problems with this type of closure as well. For instance, there could be a piece of weight left without any type of material, letting the metal loop and velcro rest on your skin. This could create irritation, rashes, and even blisters, or it could just plain annoy you. This is why you need to find a weight that sits properly around your ankles, or you just need to wear a layer of clothing between the ankle and your skin in order to protect it!
The weight of these ankle weights can also be adjusted, or it’s set to a certain number which you cannot change. Fixed weights have a, you guessed it, a fixed amount of heaviness to it, which is attached to the cloth using neoprene. Neoprene is soft on the skin, and gentle towards it even though it carries the weight. The neoprene straps are permanently stitched to the inside of the weights and they cannot be taken off to be changed or washed. On the other hand, we have adjustable weights which allow the users to adjust the heaviness according to their fitness levels. These weights have anchors that sit in pockets. These anchors can be easily taken in and out for full adjustability. Adjustable weights allow you to add up to five anchors, making them very valuable since you won’t need to buy heavier and heavier weights as you progress - all you would have to do is simply change out the anchors.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
If you don’t want to spend money on weight and feel like you could take on the task yourself, we are happy to say that you definitely can! This also allows you to add or remove as many weights as you want, making them perfectly crafted for your desires and needs. You need four pieces of fabric, some webbing, d-rings or some other type of rectangle hardware, some velcro, and something that will act as the weight, like rice, sand or iron filings. And of course, some quality thread. First, you need to cut the webbing and then place your strap in the middle. Now create pockets where the filling would go, and sew in the strap as firmly as you can. Fill in the pockets with your choice of filling, and then close the pockets and you’re ready to go!
Other Factors to Consider
Your ankle weights also need to be comfortable. The adjustable velcro closures and pads allow you to experience just that. Your ankle weights must be easily put on and taken off in order to be considered valuable and comfortable. If you struggle to put them on or remove them, you might be stuck with a cheap pair. Wearing a comfy ankle weight will also allow you to work for a longer time, and it will not distract you from the task at hand, which is working out. Loose weights will also annoy you, and you are unlikely to complete the exercise with a weight that jumps and wiggles around your legs. The padding around the weights is usually thin, but it’s just good enough to keep you cozy and safe.
Your weights need to have the right amount of breathability. This is because you need to remain dry and odor-free. When sweat collects underneath your weights, bacteria or fungus could start growing underneath it, which could, in turn, cause rashes or even infection. And not to say that it can smell really bad! The breathability of your weights will be determined by the material they are made out of, and by the filling used to add heaviness to them. A cotton and polyester blend have been proven to be the best possible choice for a breathable set. Sand and iron filings are loose and move around, and they let air move through freely as well.
You will likely want to carry the weights all around with you, and for this, you need a proper bag. Lucky for you, the weights are quite small and can fit in any gym bag or even backpack. Some weights even come with a little extra bag or pouch as a free gift when you purchase them, allowing you to enjoy the weights wherever you go. The portability of your weights might not seem like such an important factor, but if you like to travel a lot and like to be fit anywhere you are, you should also consider this before buying your weights.
Ankle weights are a great budget option for people who want to put on some leg or even arm muscle on. There are many exercises you can perform while having them on, and you can even jog or run with them, provided you do it safely and with all the risks in mind. They are adjustable and portable, and you can stay fit no matter where you are. They are great for beginners and pros alike, thanks to the variety of weights you have to choose from. The ankle weights are also usually color-coded, so you never confuse how much weight you are carrying around your ankles! We hope our guide has helped you understand them better, and that you have managed to find your new trusty pair!
Frequently Asked Questions
No matter what, we must keep our gym equipment clean. If we do not do that, bacteria and fungus could start to accumulate there, increasing the risk for infections. Also, sweat that is not cleaned out can soon start to smell really bad, and no one wants that! Cleaning your ankle weights can be as simple as throwing them in a washing machine, or it can be quite a complicated task. If the materials are machine-friendly, there is not much to think about there. But most often than not, you will need to wash your weights by hand, because their construction, and particularly their anchors will not be machine-washable. You need to use lukewarm water and mild soap, and gently rub the surface areas until you are satisfied with the result. Then gently wash the soap and dirt out, and leave them to air dry.
Many people buy ankle weights to perform cardio exercises. Although this is quite popular, it is generally not recommended, especially if you have any joint injuries or diseases. This is because the weights can alter your gait, which puts stress on your muscles and ligaments in a way they are not used to. This can result in a myriad of injuries, all that can set your progress back and keep you from exercising. For example, you could easily tear your ligaments, and that can even send you to the ER! So, our opinion is that you could run with them, but you probably shouldn’t!
The simplest thing you can do with ankle weights is just walk or jog, but as we mentioned before, this might not be so safe. Ankle weights are great exercise tools for people of all ages and can be used for a full body workout. You can even use them to recover faster from certain types of injuries. For example, you could try squatting with an ankle weight. You need to have weights around both of your ankles and perform a simple squat as you would regularly. Then, as you rise up, lift one of your legs up towards the sky, and pull it back, and then squat back down. Repeat this 10 times, and do 5 full sets. You can even wrap them around your wrists, and work on your arms. Stand up, and bring your arms out to each side, parallel to your collarbone. Do not relax your torso! Resist the urge. Then rotate your arms in circular motions, going forward 10 times, and then backward 10 times as well. And repeat! You can also try weighted lunges, the superman, leg curls, donkey kicks and many more that will surely work your whole body!
If you are not careful, or if you suffer from any pre-existing diseases or injuries, it is possible that you could injure yourself. But this is also true no matter which type of weight you use because weights challenge your muscles and body and make it work harder than usual. If you are not careful and lift more than you can handle, a muscle can be torn or a ligament injury. This is not a good thing, and if you feel like you can’t handle the amount of weight you have chosen for yourself, lower it until you can comfortably lift it without breaking proper form!
This all depends on your previous fitness levels. Ankle weights can weight as little as 2 pounds as a pair, or as much as 10 pounds, or even more. We cannot know how much weight you can handle, you are the only one who can determine this. But usually, if you don’t want to start too light or too heavy, it’s good to begin at four or five pounds. Even better, you can buy ankle weights that are adjustable, and if you cannot handle the amount of weight on you, or if you feel like it is too easy, you can simply add or remove an anchor until you are satisfied with what you’ve got!