If you are interested in either buying adjustable ankle weights, or are simply wanting to know more about them and their potential benefits, then you are have come to the right place. Firstly, for those who are unsure as to exactly what ankle weights are, I am going to provide you with a brief introduction.
Ankle weights are essentially that, weights that, in most versions, are distributed just above the ankle right along the shin. Like most other weighted clothing the idea of the adjustable ankle weights is to provide you with a resistance, requiring muscles to work harder to essentially achieve the same result that could be achieved without the weighted clothing.
The fact they can be pretty tight without causing the user to be in too much discomfort due to no surrounding major muscle groups can therefore allow for a range of exercises from running drills to leg-raises and stretches without severely inhibiting the user.
Benefits of Adjustable Weighted Ankles
By adding such a weighted resistance to the user whilst exercising, it can allow them to develop numerous health benefits right from 'building muscle' to gaining 'explosive power'. But the main reason ankle weights are such a great device in the fitness industry is through the simple fact that it allows an entirely new dimension to exercising, through the simple fact we are unable to grip free weights such as dumbbells, kettles with our feet.
Acceleration & Speed - if you used the ankle weights in running and sprint drills, it will cause the leg muscles to be worked harder as more effort is required for the same movement. Which will essentially then result in the leg muscles becoming stronger and more effective, allowing for the user to experience greater speed and acceleration.
Building Muscle - they can also be used to build greater muscle gains when used in exercises such as pull ups and leg raises, and can also be useful in adding a greater resistance to some free weight exercises such as lunges with dumbbells.
There are a whole range of health benefits that can be achieved with adjustable ankle weights (if you have anymore then please do add them to the comments list below) but they will primarily be down to, what exactly you do with them. An individual who uses them primarily for running and sprinting will likely to see results in increased endurance, acceleration and speed, whereas someone who uses them as a part of their free weights exercises are more likely to see larger muscle gains.
When buying adjustable ankle weights, I believe it is important that you invest in quality. As firstly you don't want to buy a pair of ankle weights and find that they break within a month and secondly and more importantly they are likely to be 'safer' for you. There has been some concern that some imbalanced ankle weights can potentially cause stress to the ligaments in the ankle and even the knee especially when running. But with the more expensive and modern adjustable ankle weights (such as the Valeo Adjustable Ankle Weights top right) they tend to be better balanced and built more specifically towards comfort.
You also need to give consideration to the various weights. If you are interested in resistance cardio training you are likely wanting to opt for a lower weight especially if you have only recently started, however if you are primarily wanting to build muscle through pull ups etc. then you are likely to be better off with a larger weight.