Strength in your hands: Why hand-held weights are a versatile training tool for any workout

You know the saying: “Don’t skip leg day”? Well, here’s a consideration for you: leg day doesn’t always have to mean a big session on the leg press.

In fact, hand-held weights can also be a great tool. These versatile pieces of kit aren’t only great for toning and strengthening your arms, shoulders and upper body. There’s also a wide variety of hand-held weight exercises that target your entire body, including your legs, core and even – by incorporating them into a HIIT workout – your cardiovascular system.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the different types of hand-held weights and the exercises you can do with them.


Perhaps the most well-known type of hand-held weights, dumbbells are highly versatile and can be used for a variety of exercises, including bicep curls, shoulder presses and chest flies – all great ways to strengthen and tone your arms, shoulders and chest.

For the lower body, they can be used to add intensity to squats, lunges and deadlifts – great for your glutes, quads and hamstrings.

Depending on the type of dumbbell you choose, they can start at just 1kg each and go all the way up to 70kg, meaning that whoever you are, you’ll find the right weight option for your fitness level and the exercise you’re doing; for some exercises, you may be able to take a heavier weight than for others. The key is to always choose a weight that challenges you, but that still allows you to maintain proper form and technique.

Our signature dumbbells are our Physical Performance Urethane Dumbbells, with premium quality, anti-roll heads that ensure your weights are always exactly where you last put them!


Essentially the same as dumbbells but in a lighter weight range – typically in 1kg increments from 1–10kg – tribells are the smaller, often colourful hand weights you’ll find in a group exercise environment. They tend to be fully covered in either urethane or rubber for a good grip, so they can be safely used to add resistance and challenge even in more dynamic movements and workout choreography.


Kettlebells are the ultimate piece of kit for anyone looking to take their fitness to the next level. This form of weight training is generally quite dynamic, targeting multiple muscle groups at the same time – everything from your legs and arms to core and back – and moving your body in various planes of motion to build strength, endurance, explosive power, cardiovascular fitness and metabolic conditioning.

If you’re planning to train using kettlebells, you’ll be doing exercises like kettlebell swings, squats and Turkish get-ups – all highly effective lower-body exercises.

Wrist weights & ankle weights

We know we can’t really categorise ankle weights as hand-held weights, but then again, ours are multi-purpose: it’s the same product whether you want to strap them round your wrists or your ankles.

These are great tools for adding extra resistance to your workouts, not only in traditional weight training exercises but across the board, adding a new level of challenge and intensity to activities like walking, jogging, yoga and pilates to help you get more out of your workout.

Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned athlete, home fitness enthusiast or commercial gym operator, hand-held weights are versatile and effective pieces of workout equipment that can be used to target different muscle groups and improve overall fitness.