You may or may not know that I'm slightly OCD. Everything has to be right, otherwise it bothers me. Well, it bothered me that the cheap Ebay sandbags were not sitting right on my light stands. I filled them with river pebbles, but they kept slouching here and there. I just couldn't wrap them around the center column, and they would slip and slide from the cross bars. No way I could ever move the stand without knocking the bag out of place.
There are donut sand bags for sale, but one bag is about $ 40, and it's not even filled with anything. Sand is messy, shot is difficult to get, ball bearings are expensive, rice is not heavy enough, and water gets mouldy. I needed something heavy that I could wrap around the center of the light stand so it would stay in place, just like those donut bags, but cheaper.
The problem didn't leave my mind. I pondered and pondered and pondered some more. Finally it hit me: Ankle Weights!
I got a set from Walmart with 2 straps of 5 lbs each, which I can wrap around either the cross bars if I need more weight or the center column (like in the picture.) Because they're ankle weights, they have velcro so you can strap them tight, and they're already filled. 2 go for $ 18 (Canadian).
They're easy to put on, easy to take off, easy to move when put on and don't take a lot of room in your gear bag if you need to take them with you.
And if you REALLY need to, you can even exercise with them. :)