Ankle and Wrist Weights
Ankle and wrist weights are small weights which increase resistance during physical activities like walking, running, rope jumping and similar. They help one to increase strength, stamina, calories burned and similar, but they also increase stress on joints, muscles and cardiovascular system.
Published: February 10, 2016.
One of the main advantages of using treadmills is that they provide low-impact workouts, which is important not only for people having issues with joints, especially with ankles, knees, and hips but for all people wanting to have great cardio workouts, without stressing joints too much.
Ankle and wrist weights enables one to burn extra calories, to stress muscles more than one would without those weights - which is good.
However, workout with ankle and wrist weights stress joints more than workout without them:
- if you have issues with your joints - avoid ankle and wrist weights.
- if you are over-weighted - you should generally avoid them.
- if you have no issues with your joints and no issues with weight - consider using them, just be aware of possible issues. When you start to use them, don't use them every time and vary your workouts in terms of intensity, length, and periodization.
Adjustable Ankle and Wrist Weights vs. Ankle and Wrist Weight Sets
Ankle and wrist weights come as adjustable weights and as weight sets.
Adjustable ankle and wrist weights come as pairs of weights. Their weight can be adjusted in increments to fit the needs of the trainee. The maximum individual weight of these weights is in the 5-7 pounds (2.5 - 3 kg) range, but there are heavier versions, too. Increments vary from just a few ounces to one pound, or even more.
Since there are just two weights, only one person can use them at the time, with their total weight being the weight of the pair combined. If more individuals want to use them, more pairs must be purchased.
Ankle and wrist weight sets come as several pairs of fixed size weights. Each pair can be used simultaneously by two or more trainees. However, the total weight of these sets is larger than the weight of the pair of adjustable ankle and wrist weights.
Of course, there are other little details that one must consider:
- material of the weights - material must be durable and resistant to wear and tear.
- inner side of the weight should be padded to make weights comfortable to wear, even for longer periods of time.
- straps should be strong and reliable - nobody wants a weight that must be adjusted every few minutes, etc.
If you have decided to try these weights be sure to start light and slow - don't put 5-6 pounds weights on your ankles and go to play basketball or to run sprints. There is great danger of falling down and other injuries - it takes some time for the body to adjust itself to the new weight 'distribution'.
When taking the weights off, be sure to give yourself few minutes to adjust to the new condition - it can be fun to try to slam dunk right after taking weights off and the sensation of freedom is really exciting and thrilling, but there is also a great possibility that your knees and ankles will NOT respond as you expect them to do when you try to land on the ground. Been there done that :)