How heavy should ankle weights be?
Ankle weights are a popular tool which add resistance to your workout. By adding the additional weight to the ankles, the legs have to work harder, pushing against the extra weight and working the calves, hamstrings, quads and glutes. They are available in a number of different weights typically ranging from 0.5kg to 2kg, so which should you choose?
There are many factors to consider before deciding which weight to go for. Generally, it’s best to start off with the lighter ankle weights such as the 0.5kg or 1kg which will allow you to get used to the resistance and the feeling of weights strapped to your ankle. Although that may seem light, once strapped onto the ankle they feel heavier than you may have anticipated. You may be tempted to go for heavier ankle weights but it’s better to start lighter and slowly build up the weight. This will help to avoid injury from the additional tension being placed on muscles which are not used to it. The lighter weights are also a better option if you have suffered with any form of joint pain. Adjustable ankle weights allow you to remove the weight packs or add them back in to suit your workout.
Once you are used to the lighter weight and your muscles have adapted to the extra resistance, you may decide to go heavier but it’s important to build the weight slowly to avoid the risk of injury. It’s also important to ensure your ankle weights fit snugly and comfortably around your ankles. Ill fitting ankle weights could result in injury occurring so getting the fit right is key. Ankle weights tend to come with adjustable cuffs which allow you to loosen or tighten the fit to suit.