Best ankle weights

Fitness Gear

Never use ankle weights filled with sand in the pool. Instead, choose ankle weights that are designed specifically for use in pools.

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Which ankle weight is best?

If you’re looking to incorporate light strength training into your workout routine but dumbbells just aren’t for you, then ankle weights may be the perfect alternative. Ankle weights are much lighter than most free weights, and they allow you to keep your hands free for other activities.

It’s important to find a material, weight, and style of ankle weight that’s right for you and your workout routine. As with any exercise accessory, ankle weights come in a variety of sizes and styles.

We’ve broken down all the details in our buying guide to help you make your decision easy. You’ll also find some product recommendations at the end of this article, including our favorite, the Healthy Model Life Ankle Weights Set, which is ideal for home workouts.

What to know before you buy ankle weights

Increase intensity

Ankle weights are the perfect way to easily incorporate an added boost of strength to even the simplest workouts.

Hands free

You can reap the benefits of weightlifting while keeping your hands completely free for balancing or even using free weights.

Improved balance

By adding ankle weights while you stretch or do yoga can improve your balance, range of motion, and even your flexibility.

Target difficult areas

Ankle weights help to target many lower-body muscles that are otherwise difficult to work out.

Types of workouts

You can do a variety of workouts with a quality set of ankle weights:

  • Full-body workouts can be completed at home by using your weights on both your ankles and your wrists to perform lower and upper body exercises.
  • Cardio workouts can be amplified by adding ankle weights. Whether you’re running, swimming, or even biking, ankle weights may produce better, faster results.
  • Injury recovery workouts often incorporate ankle weights to slowly rebuild strength.
  • Yoga and other stretches also benefit from the addition of ankle weights. You’ll start to notice increased flexibility and muscle building when you incorporate the weights into your workout.


You can find ankle weights in a range of sizes from one to 10 pounds. Choosing the right weight for your skill level and body type is arguably the most important decision you have to make when purchasing ankle weights. Be sure to find a pair that’s heavy enough to give you results, but not so heavy that you strain yourself. The average person should be comfortable with 1- to 5-pound weights.

What to look for in quality ankle weights


Since you will probably be working up a sweat during your workouts, we suggest looking for a water-resistant material for your ankle weights. You can commonly find weights made from materials like nylon or neoprene that are both comfortable and safe to get wet.


While the color of your ankle weights does not influence their effectiveness, you may still want to match the weights to the rest of your workout gear. For outdoor workouts, look for a reflective material that catches the light.


To help guarantee that you will actually use them, be sure to find a pair of ankle weights that are comfortable to wear. Look for weights with a soft interior lining and padding that contours to the shape of your ankle.


You will most commonly find ankle weights with adjustable Velcro closures, and are designed to work like an adjustable belt. While both closures are effective, if you plan on doing any vigorous workouts, belted styles are more likely to stay secure.

How much you can expect to spend on an ankle weight

Depending on the exact weight, you can expect to spend anywhere from $10-$55 on a set of ankle weights. The heavier the weight, the more you’re likely to pay. In addition, midrange to high-end sets are more likely to have comfortable padding.

Best ankle weights FAQ

Q. I’ve never tried ankle weights. What weight should I start with?

A. Generally speaking, it’s always best to start small and work your way up. However, if you’re already an active exerciser, you can probably handle 5 pounds or more.

Q. How can I clean my ankle weights?

A. It’s often best to use a damp cloth to wipe down your ankle weights. In most cases, fully submerging them in water will cause damage and should be avoided. For the best results, always consult the manufacturer’s guidelines.

What are the best ankle weights to buy?

Top ankle weight

HealthyModelLife’s Ankle Weights Set

HealthyModelLife’s Ankle Weights Set

What you should know: A comfortable and sleek set of ankle weight cuffs, ideal for those with smaller slender ankles.

What you’ll love: Padded cuffs provide comfort and can be used on the wrists as well. Adjustable closure. Available in 1, 2, 5, or 8 pounds. Perfect for light at-home training.

What you should consider: Does not accommodate those with larger ankles.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top ankle weight for the money

Gaiam’s Ankle Weights

Gaiam’s Ankle Weights

What you should know: A comfortable pair of cuffs with a secure attachment, ideal for average ankle size.

What you’ll love: Velcro closure is effective. Material is comfortable and doesn’t irritate the skin. Each cuff weighs 2 1/2 pounds. Available in vibrant green.

What you should consider: Might be too small for some.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Nordic Lifting’s Ankle/Wrist Weights

Nordic Lifting’s Ankle/Wrist Weights

What you should know: A quality pair of ankle and wrist weight cuffs that can be used in a variety of workouts.

What you’ll love: Ideal for therapy, strength training, post-surgery recovery, and muscle building. Available in a range of sizes, from one to five pounds. Includes a convenient carrying bag. Reflective material is safe to use outside.

What you should consider: Some complaints of the material irritating skin. Wearing long socks can prevent this.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Amber Van Wort writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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