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Calories Burned Playing Pickleball: Pickleball’s Health Benefits

Pickleball is easy to pick up and is a great game for socializing with friends or taking on serious competition. It’s also great for your health!

How many calories does playing pickleball burn? Are there any other health benefits? Read on to find out!

How Many Calories Does Playing Pickleball Burn?

On average, most players will burn between 400-800 calories per hour of pickleball play. We arrived at this range by averaging data from physicians, and sources like Anytime Fitness and Racquet Sports Center.

Keep in mind that the number of calories burned varies from person to person and is highly dependent on individual factors such as age, weight, sex, and body composition.

It isn’t unusual for calories to fall outside of this range either – USA Pickleball reported that many players recorded themselves burning 600-1,000 calories within a one to two hour period.

Regardless of exactly how many calories are burned, pickleball remains an excellent way to stay in shape and maintain a healthy and active lifestyle. Read on for more of this sport's great health benefits!

What Factors Affect How Many Calories Are Burned Playing Pickleball?

As mentioned above, several factors affect how many calories are burned playing pickleball. These factors can be grouped into two categories: individual characteristics & duration and intensity of play.

Individual Characteristics

As with any sport, the number of calories that a person burns playing pickleball is highly dependent on an individual’s unique health profile.

According to the Mayo Clinic, each person’s basal metabolic rate significantly impacts how calories are burned. Several factors they listed have an effect on basal metabolic rate:

Body Size & Composition: A person who is larger or has more muscle mass will burn more calories, including when they’re at rest.

Sex: Men tend to burn more calories than women because they tend to have more muscle and less body fat which translates to more calories burned.

Age: As we age, we tend to lose muscle, and more of our body composition is fat which slows calorie burning.

Duration & Intensity of Play

As expected, how long you participate in any physical activity also directly impacts how many calories you will burn. Typically, pickleball is played for one to two hours at a time.

A player’s level of intensity while playing is also a key factor when determining calorie expenditure. Exerting more effort engages more muscles and moves the body at a faster rate, which burns more calories over time.

Is Pickleball Good For Weight Loss?

Pickleball Weight Loss Scale

Considering all the above, pickleball is a great activity for losing weight! As long as a person consumes fewer calories than they burn, they’ll be in a caloric deficit and will lose weight.

Pickleball is a great way to increase calories burned which can help contribute to a person’s overall caloric deficit. Combining regular pickleball play with a balanced, healthy diet & lifestyle is a sure bet to shed pounds!

Other Pickleball Health Benefits?

Pickleball Health Benefits

Apart from weight loss, playing pickleball leads to many positive health benefits. Here are a few examples:

Lowered Risk of Heart Disease: A study in the International Journal of Research in Exercise Physiology found that playing one hour of pickleball three days per week for six weeks improved cardiorespiratory fitness, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels.

Improved Mobility & Muscle Strength: One study found pickleball improved overall mobility and a separate Utah State University study found that pickleball also increased muscle overall muscle strength.

Improved Mood and Reduced Risk of Depression: A 2018 study found pickleball reduced depression and improved overall mood.

Best of all, pickleball is easy on the joints and can be adjusted to be more or less physically demanding based on preference, ensuring you can enjoy this wonderful game and all its benefits for many years to come!

Want All These Health Benefits?

We’ve partnered with YouFit Gyms to provide easy and affordable access to pickleball bookings. Find a local YouFit Gym near you and start playing for as low as $5!

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