Are Ankle Weights Bad for Your Knees?

People may decide to wear ankle weights when looking for a way to intensify resistance-training exercises and aerobic activity, such as walking, jogging or running. Wearing ankle weights of 1 to 3 pounds can increase oxygen intake by 5 percent to 10 percent, according to Cedric X. Bryant, chief science officer for the American Council of Exercise. The use of ankle weights, however, is not without its drawbacks.

Ankle weights put pressure on your knees and can cause injury. Credit: Robert Kelsey/iStock/Getty Images

Risk vs. Reward

Bryant notes that ankle weights can disrupt your walking and running mechanics, which can lead to knee and ankle injury. They can also increase the loading impact on knees, ankles and hips. This can cause joint strain and knee pain. If you are healthy and without joint issues you may use ankle weights, Dr. Anthony Luke, director of primary care sports medicine at University of California San Francisco, told the "Los Angeles Times," but he advised discontinuing their use if you experience any pain.

Load Comments

Copyright © 2019 Leaf Group Ltd. Use of this web site constitutes acceptance of the LIVESTRONG.COM Terms of Use , Privacy Policy and Copyright Policy . The material appearing on LIVESTRONG.COM is for educational use only. It should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. LIVESTRONG is a registered trademark of the LIVESTRONG Foundation. The LIVESTRONG Foundation and LIVESTRONG.COM do not endorse any of the products or services that are advertised on the web site. Moreover, we do not select every advertiser or advertisement that appears on the web site-many of the advertisements are served by third party advertising companies.