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Fitness Walking Pros and Cons of Ankle Weights

If you are training or working out for the sake of it, you will probably do a lot of running; however, you may not want to run. Instead, you may want to go on a walk that could span several miles to and from a location. But, simply walking may not cut it. For many reasons, you may want to put on weights. You may be wearing a weight vest or a pair of ankle weights. For several reasons, it might be beneficial to be wearing ankle weights. But, wear the ankle weights only in moderation. If you overdo it with the ankle weights, you will end up messing up all the joints in your legs.

An article in the Los Angeles Times explains that ankle weights, when worn, will make your leg muscles work harder. When doing the same motion, it is harder because of the added weight. Keep in mind that ankle weights can differ. You could have a pair of ten pound or fifteen pound ankle weights. Because you are exerting yourself, you will be getting a cardiovascular workout at the same time.

When building muscles, you do not want to forsake your cardiovascular workouts either.

An article on Live Strong, lists several benefits for ankle weights when doing fitness walking. The first benefit explained is an improvement to your cardiovascular workout. When wearing the weights, there is the increased gravitational resistance. Normally, it is easy to move your legs. With the weights, you have to put forth more effort to do so. Expect that your hamstrings, glutes, and quadriceps to have quite the workout. In most cases, your legs can take the resistance as they are the only parts of your body to take the most abuse. When you are walking, standing, or running, your muscles are at work.

You build better bone density and muscle strength in your legs. For senior citizens, this can be used as an alternative to weight machines. Due to increasing the bone density, ankle weights can be beneficial to females as they are more at risk of getting osteoporosis.

Due to the increase in weight load, your body works harder to move. This, your organs work harder. Thus, you burn more calories.

However, ankle weights are not without drawbacks. If you have a history of joint and muscle problems in your legs, then ankle weights are not a good idea. Be sure to use your better judgment before deciding to use ankle weights. If you do not use them carefully, you risk hurting your legs. Be sure to consult a physician or qualified physical trainer about your leg condition and using ankle weights.