The 8 Best Ankle Weights to Make Any Home Workout More Challenging
Easy-to-use and compact workout equipment, like resistance bands and adjustable dumbbells, flew off the shelves earlier this spring as the coronavirus pandemic led more people to work out at home. But unlike paper towels or disinfectants, which restocked quickly, these non-essential items are still nearly impossible to find. And now we're seeing yet another piece of home fitness equipment going out of stock: ankle weights.
The wearable weights instantly up the intensity of any workout, especially glute and leg-focused exercises, by increasing the difficulty of your movements. They typically start at a half-pound and go up to 5 pounds each, but occasionally, you'll find a options that weigh as much as 10 pounds each. While that might not seem like much, just a tiny bit of weight can add a lot of resistance and make your workout more challenging, especially when you're doing multiple reps.
Plus, these handy weights do more than build a lifted booty. Resistance training is also clinically proven to increase bone strength. The stress of training on your bones actually increases their strength and can slow down the loss of bone density that occurs after age 30, according to this 2018 study published in Endocrinology and Metabolism.
They're also a celebrity-approved way to build muscle. Not only was Jessica Alba recently spotted wearing a pair during a walk around her neighborhood in Los Angeles, but celebrity trainer Tracy Anderson previously told Health that Jennifer Lopez's workout routine included 5-pound ankle weights. In fact, tons of popular trainers, like Kayla Itsines, Holly Perkins, and Kevin Mejia swear by them, too.
While this trendy workout accessory can be hard to find these days, we turned to some unexpected online retailers and discovered a handful of high-quality, affordable options still in stock. Below, browse the best ankle weights you can buy online and get shipped right to your door. But you'll want to act fast—once they're gone, there's no telling when they'll be back.
- Most Comfortable: Fitnessery Ankle Weights
- Best Adjustable: Sportneer Ankle Weights
- Most Challenging: Cap Barbell 20-Pound Adjustable Ankle Weights
- Best Kit: The Cuff 7-Piece Ankle and Wrist Set
- Best for Beginners: Fragraim Ankle Weights
- Most Affordable: Tone Fitness Ankle Weights
- Most Versatile: Tone-y Bands Wearable Weights
- Best for Low-Impact Exercise:P. Volve Beginners Kit
Most Comfortable: Fitnessery Ankle Weights
These extra-long ankle weights have a form-fitting construction that's perfect for a wide range of activities, from strength training to cardio. They're designed to evenly distribute the weight around each ankle for consistent resistance across muscles. Best of all, they're actually comfortable: They use soft sand to add weight and have a neoprene exterior that won't chafe or painfully rub against skin. What's more, they come in weights ranging from 1 to 5 pounds.
Available at amazon.com, from $29
Best Adjustable: Sportneer Ankle Weights
You'll feel completely in control of your workout with this adjustable set: It comes with 10 one-pound weights to distribute across 2 cuffs. Each cuff can hold up to 5 pounds, so you can start small and slowly work towards J. Lo's level of resistance. They also have adjustable velcro straps and soft neoprene exteriors, so the design isn't just customized but also comfortable.
Available at amazon.com, $40
Most Challenging: Cap Barbell 20-Pound Adjustable Ankle Weights
Channel your inner Iron Man with this extra challenging adjustable ankle weight set. It comes with 10 2-pound weights and 2 cuffs outfitted with weight pockets, so you can mix and match for a fully customized strength workout. Evenly distribute the weight to create a pair of 10-pound cuffs for each leg, or challenge yourself by putting extra weights into one cuff for up to 20 pounds of killer resistance. Either way, the ergonomic weights will stay securely in place thanks to 2 hook-and-loop closures on each cuff.
Available at amazon.com, $33
Best Kit: The Cuff Deluxe 7-Piece Ankle and Wrist Set
Upgrade your home gym lineup with this set of 7 ankle and wrist weights. With cuffed weights ranging from 1 pound to 10 pounds, this kit accounts for a wide range of exercises. You'll also love the vinyl exterior on the adjustable weights: Not only is it easy to clean, but it also doesn't absorb sweat. Best of all, their extra-long straps guarantee they stay in place for your entire workout.
Available at amazon.com, $98 (was $113)
Best for Beginners: Fragraim Ankle Weights
If you're just starting to explore weighted exercises, this pair of adjustable half-pound weights should be your top pick. The lightest pick on the list, they're optimized for comfort with a neoprene shell and a weighted sand interior. Their velcro, hook-and-loop closures also make them easy to put on both the ankles and wrists. Plus, they're available in increments up to 5 pounds so you can easily up the weight as your strength increases.
Available at amazon.com, $19
Most Affordable: Tone Fitness Ankle Weights
Despite an affordable price tag, this pair of 2.5-pound weights holds up to the competition. Their neoprene exterior promises breathability, while a soft sand interior ensures a smooth, second-skin fit. They also have adjustable velcro fastenings to guarantee a secure fit during even the most intense movements.
Available at amazon.com, $11
Most Versatile: Tone-y Bands Wearable Weights
These adjustable weights are actually designed to wear on your wrists, but reviewers say the large and medium sizes are perfect for ankles, too. This hack makes them a super versatile option for anyone seeking odor-free and waterproof weights. They're constructed with a long-lasting durable silicone with removable metal weights inside, so it's easy to adjust them to your desired resistance. Plus, the sleek style comes in a handful of colors.
Available at amazon.com, from $35
Best for Low-Impact Exercise: P. Volve Beginners Kit
Need more than just ankle weights? Try this multi-use kit from P. Volve, which includes a pair of 2-pound dumbbells, the brand's signature P-ball, and a pair of ankle weights. The 1.5-pound weights are optimized for the program's step exercises and leg lifts with a sand-filled design that hugs the ankle and uses a secure velcro closure. Use the ankle weights with the rest of the equipment in the set to tackle a wide range of low-impact resistance exercises.
Available at amazon.com, $80
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