Want to raise your calisthenics workout stakes? Try adding some weight to your ankles to enable you to burn more calories and increase the overall strength of your lower extremities.
Ankle weights are a great addition to your workout routine if you are looking for something that can help you tone your legs. This workout tool is best to supplement your regular routine and further intensify the development of your leg muscles.
True, doing leg raises will effectively tone your legs. However, experts suggest that attaching weights to your legs will do more in shaping them quicker and better.
Often we prefer bodyweight progressions here. But doing leg exercises with weights can produce results. Often you need something like this to push your routine.
The ankle weight is a flexible tool and you can use them as a workout tool but also attach them when walking. This has its fair share of advantages and disadvantages. All of this we will dive into.
So how are ankle weights useful in toning your legs? Below we will answer this question and more.
What do ankle weights do for your legs?
The best effect ankle weights can bring to your legs is for them to become toned and well-formed.
They also improve the form of your workout by forcing hypertrophy. However, it is still best to do this with repetition and variation, just like with any calisthenics workout routine.
All aside, ankle weights add versatility to your workout routine.
Putting more variety in your routine is good even for stationary exercises like leg raises. Because ankle weights add weight to your legs when working out, continued use will result in improved strength and endurance.
The end result?
Boosted stamina, larger more toned legs. Strengthened and toned thighs.
Using ankle weights during your workout routine also improves the strength of your glutes, calves and even your hamstrings.
Does walking with ankle weights make a difference?
Walking with ankle weights definitely makes a difference.
But this tool must be used properly.
The right amount of weight for your body and watching out for overuse on your muscles and joints are the two key items.
So don’t overdo it, know your limits, and listen to your body. Remember that ankle weights will bring a positive difference by toning your legs and increasing the overall strength of your body.
Gradual introductions and not forcing it will get you the results you seek.
Using ankle weights when walking has its fair share of benefits and advantages, but always remember to look out for some signs of possible strains and fatigue.
Is it safe to walk with ankle weights?
As mentioned in the previous section, ankle weights are effective in toning your legs. However, walking with ankle weights can be dangerous and you should proceed with caution.
Apart from the strain, wear and tear that can occur, ankle weight also alter your gait and stride.
This can create undue stress on the back portion of your hips. You can do this safely and get benefits, just don’t overdo it. We suggest that you use those that are not more than 3-5 pounds.
If you are tempted to progress from walking to running, keep in mind you see numerous injuries from this. Progress slowly if choosing this path. Start with slow short walks, then slowly increase the intensity. You should be able to read your progress via feedback from your legs and their lactic acid buildup.
What muscles does walking with ankle weights work?
Walking with ankle weights make use of muscles such as the hamstrings, glutes, and quadriceps. These groups of muscles work and exert more effort to do motions similarly done in the absence of weights.
Specifically for less active muscles like the glutes, results can come fast walking with ankle weights.
Glutes are usually at rest because they tend to be inactive especially for those who are mostly seated for a long while.
Doing your leg exercises with the assistance of ankle weights will enable the latter to target these isolated groups of muscles so they become more mobile and can be developed further.
As for the hamstrings, these normally function when walking as they facilitate the movement of both your hips and knees.
A common misconception with hamstrings is that people think that this is only a single muscle. When in fact, it comprises three different muscles working together. You can further develop these groups of muscles when walking with the assistance of ankle weights. However, it is important to remember to use only the suggested 3 to 5-pound weight so as to not strain the muscles.
Ankle weights are an effective workout tool that can further intensify your leg routine.
Want toned legs quicker? Compared to doing the same workout repetitions you can see quick gains here.
Of course, just like any other workout tool or equipment, it is important that you educate yourself on the right way to use ankle weights.
You may start by using these ankle weights in lower weights and in smaller time intervals. When you are slowly getting the hang of it and your body is already adjusting to the weights, you may then consider intensifying it further to challenge your legs more. When done right and used efficiently, these ankle weights will satisfy you and give the results that you need.