Theraband Comfortfit Ankle & Wrist Weight
- Distribute weight evenly
- Too large to use as a wrist weight
Therabands 2.5-pound weights excelled in testingas an ankle device. Featuring a neoprene exterior, an interior terrycloth lining, and a sandbag-type weight, it felt soft against my skin and distributed its weight evenly. Like the CAP ankle/wrist weight, it also features a velcro strap for easy fit adjustments. Weight options range from 1 pound to 2.5 pounds.
But even though its a perfectly adequate ankle weight, its far too large to function as a wrist weight. To me, it felt more like a loose-fitting bangle bracelet than a piece of fitness equipment, slipping up and down and jerking side to side whenever I moved. All of that said, it could work as a wrist weight for a bigger person. The material also seemed hardy and solidly constructed for long-term use.
With 4.5 stars across 400 ratings on Amazon, most people agree with my assessment. One reviewer suggests buying stretchy wrist wraps and putting them on before strapping the weights to the wrists to make them fit better.
Ankle Weights Can Help You Train For Harder Workouts
We all know that learning how to get fit isn’t an easy process but ankle weights can help make it a smoother journey, the PT says, especially if you’re training for a race. “Having a training plan that incorporates ankle weights is particularly good if you have a challenge coming up. When you take the weights off on the big day, you’ll feel like you’re flying,” Hart explains.
“If you have a running race coming up but need to squeeze more miles into the working day, adding weights while walking can be a great way to do this without needing a shower and full change of clothing,” she says.
They Help Strengthen Your Legs And Booty
Leg lifts, kickbacks, fire hydrants ~ all of these lower-body moves get an upgrade when you strap on some ankle weights. The extra resistance requires you to lift more weight throughout each movement, strengthening your quads, hamstrings, calves, and glutes. Plus, more resistance means your core has to fire up even more! So you gain a strong lower half and a stable center, all by adding ankle weights.
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Theyre Great For Accessory Work
It isnt just people looking to slim down and tone up slightly who can benefit from wearing ankle weights. It turns out that people who are serious about weightlifting can benefit from them too.
Think about it, when you wear ankle weights youre building muscle in the legs and making them stronger and more powerful.
The more powerful they are, the more they will be able to lift.
Obviously, you cant expect to squat more than 4 x Worlds Strongest Man Brian Shaw by simply working out with ankle weights twice a week, but if you do want to improve your squat slightly, ankle weights are perfect.
Talk To Your Doctor Before Using Ankle Weights
As with any new fitness routine, you should ideally get sign-off from your doctor or another medical expert before starting a regular ankle weights workout routine. “I advise students to check in with their health practitioner before starting anything new for the most specific and up-to-date medical advice aimed specifically for their optimal health,” says Goldblum.
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Clinical Use Of Ankle Weights
The primary use for ankle weights in a clinical setting is for improving:
For example, a 2016 study found that using a combined ankle weight of 0.5%, 1%, and 1.5% of a subjects body mass lowered errors in knee joint repositioning in older adults when compared to no resistance .
According to the study, the 1% ankle weight group performed the best, though all weighted groups showed improvement.
A different study on stroke rehabilitation patients showed that adding 35% of individuals body weight in ankle weights on the stroke-affected side leg improved the patients ability to balance .
As such, ankle weights may be a promising rehabilitation solution for people whove experienced a stroke and a tool for gait improvement in older adults.
While these studies are promising, you should always consult your healthcare provider before attempting any intervention for medical issues.
Ankle Weight Exercises For Abs
If your abdominal routine has gotten too easy, add ankle weights suggests All About Abs, which are especially beneficial for targeting the lower abdominal section â a hard area to train. Instead of doing situps, wear ankle weights and perform bicycle exercises, reverse abdominal lifts and knee-to-chest exercises.
When you use ankle weights this way, keep your abdominal muscles contracted and maintain a pelvic tilt â pulling your belly button back toward your spine â throughout each exercise. Always do the movements slowly and with control, and avoid swinging yourself through the motion. Moving too quickly while wearing weights may cause back injuries.
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Ankle Weights Good Or Bad
If ankle weights used the right way, they’re good for you. If you understand how to use them, what exercises are safe, when to stop exercising with them, then you’re in the clear. However, If ankle weights used the wrong way, they will be bad for you. Make sure you don’t have any existing ankle or knee injuries. As a result, this can worsen the condition. If you are unsure of this, consult a physician. In addition, if you’re unsure of what exercises to do and how to go about using ankle weights consult a personal trainer with proper knowledge.
Aiding In Weight Loss
When combined with a healthy diet and regular exercise, wearing ankle weights can help you lose body fat percentage as part of your weight loss goals. Our bodies are designed to burn calories and fat to reduce body weight.
When we exercise, our muscles consume those calories and release them as heat through the bodys core. If youre not burning enough calories, your body will store what it doesnt need.
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Who Should Avoid Them
If you have any ankle, knee, or hip conditions or are recovering from an injury, you should prob avoid wearing ankle weights unless a healthcare professional recommends it. They can put extra pressure in those areas and lead to muscular imbalances .
Still dont know if you should use ankle weights? Talk with a certified personal trainer or fitness instructor. They can give you personalized advice on what tools might be best for your workout goals.
Which Features Matter Most When Buying This Product
Overall comfortIdeally, your ankle and wrist weights are easy to adjust and the fit is snug without feeling confining. The fit and feel of your equipment should never distract you from your workout.
If the product claims to function as both an ankle weight and a wrist weight, you should be able to wear it comfortably in both cases.
Will your weights stand up to sweat, jostling, occasional washing, and the rigors of regular use without falling apart?
Can you add or decrease the weight? Being able to increase the difficulty as you get stronger or when you want to wear your weight as an ankle weight instead of a wrist weight is a nice bonus feature.
Most of the time, the best wrist weights are also the best ankle weights. But if you know youll use them more for one extremity than the other, pick a size and weight thats more appropriate for your lower and upper half.
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They Make A Great Talking Point
One benefit of ankle weights that a lot of people probably never considered is the fact that they make a fantastic talking point.
Think about it, if youre in the gym on the stair climber, or are out jogging while wearing them, as they are so unusual people will stop and comment on them, which is ideal if youre in a talkative mood and are looking to socialize, which many of you will be after 2020 and the first half of 2021 no doubt.
Benefit #: Strengthening Your Legs
One of the top benefits that you can get from wearing ankle weights is that they go a really long way in helping you to increase the strength of your legs, not to mention that they also help you get that really muscular look that you are aiming for. The simple fact of the matter is that the extra weight that you get from strapping these things on forces you to use your leg muscles much more, thus helping your legs get much stronger much faster.
Your glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings, and other leg muscles will all greatly benefit from wearing ankle weights while you walk, run, cycle, or do any other kind of exercise. 5 or 10 extra pounds may not seem like that much, but when you work out for any number of time with that added weight, it really helps to strain your muscles just that much more. It actually takes quite a bit of force to carry around that extra weight, and that required force can go a very long way in toning your legs.
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What Are The Benefits Of Walking With Ankle Weights
The benefits of walking with weights include increased calorie burn, weight loss, and improve muscle tone. Wearing weights while walking can also increase your endurance.
Does Walking with Ankle Weights Burn More Calories?
Adding weight increases the intensity of a workout and increases the calories you burn. This is true whether you’re walking, running, or performing any other activity.
According to the ACE, adding 1-3 pound weights can increase calorie burn for aerobic exercises by 5-15%.
Does Walking with Ankle Weights Help Running Endurance?
Building muscle and endurance in one activity, like walking, means that you can transfer those benefits to other activities, like running.
Maybe you’re looking to run longer or faster, but you’re hesitant to run with ankle weights. Consider adding ankle weights to your workout regimen in other ways.
Walking is an excellent cross-training activity for runners. Increase the intensity of walking workouts by adding ankle weights. You can also add ankle weights to your strength training exercises.
They Boost Your Metabolic Burn
Because ankle weights crank up the intensity on your workout, they also get your metabolism working in overdrive. One small study on exercisers who wore ankle weights while running found that they increased their cardio fitness and burned more calories than those who didnt have weight around their ankles.
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Benefit #: They Are Very Versatile
Another thing that you will definitely like about ankle weights is that they are very versatile in nature. What we mean is that you can get a good workout at any time of the day, even when you arent actually exercising.
You can wear ankle weights while doing chores around the house, at work, or when youre walking your dog too. You can wear them while going for a jog, while cycling, when swimming, or when you are doing weight training and resistance training too. You can wear these things at literally any time of the day to get some extra calorie burning effects, and you dont even have to be at the gym.
On that same note, ankle weights are actually pretty small and comfortable to wear, which means you can comfortably wear them under your jeans or sweat pants without them getting in the way of your daily routine. These things are also very versatile because they come in different weight classes, so when you get used to a lighter weight, you can always increase the weight of the ankle weights to keep progressing in fitness as time goes on.
Even better is the fact that ankle weights can also double as wrist weights, so when you dont want them on your ankles, you can always wear them on your wrists to give your arms some strength boosting benefits too.
How To Use Ankle Weights
Ankle weights can be used in a number of different ways to achieve different results. Changing up the weight with various exercises makes you feel things differently by using different muscles and engaging those hard-to-reach areas.
Try using your ankle to activate the hips through propulsion or to activate certain parts of the butt in accelerating and decelerating the motion. Depending on whether you are on the mat doing butt lifts or standing up doing legs lifts, the weight you use makes a difference in where you feel it.
For exercises with big ranges of motion, such as a leg lift that is at the end range, keep the weight light to allow you to reach the right muscles and help with balance. With butt lifts, use a medium weight to really make your butt work without putting strain on the back.
Use the heaviest weight when doing front raises with thighs, this allows the runway muscles at the top of the thigh and in the front of the hip to become more prominent and to eliminate the bulk in the front of the thigh.
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Things To Remember When Wearing Ankle Weights
Ankle weights offer many benefits as long as you wear them correctly. Use these tips to ensure youre wearing your ankle weights the right way:
- Strap them properly: Your ankle weights should fit you snugly, but they shouldnt be too tight since this can interfere with your blood circulation and make you feel uncomfortable.
- Dont use too much weight: Limit yourself to a maximum of 3 lbs. Wearing ankle weights that weigh over 3lbs can lead to injuries.
- Dont wear them often: Your joints and muscles need to rest, so dont wear your ankle weights 24/7.
- Avoid wearing them when doing aerobic exercises: It might seem like a good idea to wear ankle weights when walking or running, but doing so can actually change your gait and cause injuries. Use ankle weights when performing non-aerobic workouts like leg lifts and reverse abdominal lifts.
- Avoid them if you have joint problems: If you have existing joint pain or inflammation, you should not use ankle weights since these can exacerbate your condition.
Can Ankle Weights Tone My Legs
The most obvious muscles you can target with ankle weights are your legs.
For many people, “leg day” involves jumping jacks, lunges, and leg raises. By themselves, these exercises are highly effective at toning your leg muscles. Adding ankle weights increases this effectiveness by increasing the workout’s intensity.
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Using Ankle Weights Correctly
Before strapping on the Velcro, consider these tips that might help you get the most out of ankle weights:
- Make sure you strap them on correctly. Your ankle weights shouldnt be so tight that they bruise you, but they shouldnt be so loose that they slide off, either.
- Start out light, then increase. If youve never tried using ankle weights before, pick a lighter one, and then amp it up as you progress.
- Find a sweet spot. Ideally, choose an ankle weight that is between 1 and 2 percent of your body weight.
- Dont overdo it! Wearing ankle weights for too long can cause injuries or throw off your gait. Fifteen-minute sessions twice a week can be a safe place to start.
Heavy Ankle Weight Staple Exercise #: Leg Curls And Extensions
Having a home gym and training directly where you live is a great way to stay consistent and save time by not having to commute to the gym. It is also cost effective.
However, some exercises like ham curls, leg extensions and reverse hypers are hard to perform.
These exercises usually require expensive and space taking machines. You can try to replace the machines with regular ankle weights but they are usually not enough weight for a proper stimulus.
However, with heavy ankle weights, you can get the benefits of being able to train these 3 leg exercises in the comfort of your own home.
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Walking With Ankle Weight
Even though you burn more calories and can tone your legs with Ankle Weights, it is not recommended to walk with Ankle Weights. As previously mentioned, ankles weights can easily cause joint stress and even muscle strain or overload of the joints.
As well, heavier ankle weights can cause changes to your stride, which can create stress on the back and hips. If you do choose to walk with Ankle Weights as part of a rehabilitative process, make sure they are not heavier than 3-5 pounds.
If you are looking to increase the intensity of your walks, try jogging for short spurts during your walk or simply increase your pace. When walking outdoors, it can be helpful to use landmarks such as lampposts to determine the distance you will increase your pace or jog for.
What Are Ankle Weights Used For
Ankle weights are a common component of many physical therapy exercises, especially those that target ankle injuries, like sprains. They come in various weights and sizes. This versatility lets physical therapists incorporate them into rehab programs for patients with diverse needs and ability levels.
Ankle weights are helpful outside of a rehab setting, though. Many people use ankle weights to increase resistance when performing targeted leg exercises. Others add ankle weights to their walking or running program.
Some people even wear ankle weights during portions of their daily activities.
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