During the first few weeks of the pandemic and like many others, I transitioned from working out at the gym to taking livestream fitness classes in my living room. Thinking stay at home orders would only last a few weeks, I made do with jars of tomato sauce as hand weights and paper plates as sliders. But as days passed and it became clear I wouldn't be going back to the gym for quite some time, I needed to invest in fitness gear. I took that as an opportunity to explore Bala’s suite of products. I saw fitness instructors wearing the brand’s Bangles while teaching online pilates and barre classes, and I figured if experts used them for their at-home workouts, maybe I should, too.
The vibrant colors of Bala’s Bangles first caught my eye, as did the ability to wear them on your wrists and ankles. After reading through dozens of positive reviews on the brand’s website, I bought a pair. Reviewers complimented the Bangles’ function as well as their stylish design, which I didn't think was important to me, but the more I read, I realized it was. Minutes into wearing the Bangles for the first time, I decided they were the best wrist weights I’d ever worn. I almost forgot I was wearing them — they became an extension of my arm.
Bala Bangles are low profile and don’t get in your way while working out. They come in half pound, 1 pound and 2 pound options. I bought the 1 pound pair, which I find to be very versatile and not too heavy, so they’re comfortable to wear them for an extended period of time. You can wear them to add intensity to mat workouts like yoga and HIIT, as well as while you’re walking, running, swimming or using the elliptical machine. Bala also uploads videos of fitness routines you can do with its products on its website.
The biggest flaw I identified while wearing other wrist weights is that they’re hard to put on. And even when you do get them on, it can be challenging to find the right fit. But Bala Bangles are flexible and the Velcro strap is long enough that you can hold one end and wrap the other end around your wrist. The same goes for putting them on your ankles. Other than where the weights are situated on the Bangle, the rest of it is Velcro, so you can easily adjust how tight or loose you want the fit to be. The Velcro also secures the Bangles to your body — even while doing high intensity workouts, they don't come unattached.
Bala Bangles are available in a range of colors from Deep Blue to Cherry Red, as well as limited edition styles like Shade, Neon Pride and Shine. They’re stylish and become part of your fitness attire (even if you’re at home and no one sees it). I’m as excited to wear my Bala Bangles as I am to wear my Fabletics sets, and using a fitness product I love to use and wear encourages me to workout. I chose the Blush color to match my favorite pink Brooks sports bra and because some of Bala’s other products come in the color to match. A mesh carrying base is included with the Bangles so you can easily store and travel with them. I always pack my Bala Bangles in my carry-on luggage or weekender bag so I can work out while traveling.
Beyond Bala Bangles, the brand makes a variety of other fitness gear as well as accessories like scrunchies. To clean its items, Bala recommends using an all natural cleaner. I wipe mine down with Blueland’s Multi-Surface Cleaner spray and a microfiber towel, but you can also buy Bala’s Fresh Gear Spray. All products are sold individually, and Bala offers two product sets: The Essentials Kit and The All In Kit.
Bala’s Bars are the brand's version of dumbbells. They’re designed without the rounded end traditional dumbbells have, giving the Bars an even weight distribution. They’re sold as a set of two and are 3 pounds each. A mesh carrying case is included with the Bars and they’re available in five colors: Punch, Charcoal, Sand, Lavender and Shine.
The Beam is Bala’s newest product. It’s a 15 pound weighted bar that’s 3 feet long, designed to use while doing presses, curls, rows, squats and lunges. Its wavy silhouette is made to sit on top of your shoulders and guides you where to hold the Beam. The Beam is available in three colors: Charcoal, Blush and Sand.
Bala says its Power Ring is a cross between kettlebells and dumbbells. It’s 10 pounds and you can use it to press, hold, swing and squat. The Power Ring features an even weight distribution and is available in seven colors like Melon, Shine and Punch. Bala also offers The Power Ring Set, which includes three rings in different sizes and weights: 10, 8 and 5 pounds.
Bala’s colorful latex Resistance Bands come in a set of five. The bands increase in resistance on a 1 to 5 scale, and the resistance level is printed directly on the bands. They come with a mesh carrying case, too.
Bala’s 7 inch dual sided sliders help engage your core during workouts. They come in a set of two and with a mesh carrying case. The sliders are available in three colors: Charcoal, Blush and Heather.