How Many Calories To Play Pickleball

Pickleball is undeniably entertaining. It is more active than table tennis, but it does not require as many sprints as a full-fledged game of tennis.

How Many Calories To Play Pickleball?

It is an excellent aerobic sport, but how many calories can someone burn while playing pickleball? Can pickleball replace a training session at the gym or your day’s jogging or running session?

Keep reading below to find out!

What Is Pickleball?

If you came here by accident, then you might be wondering what pickleball is. You’d be spared if you didn’t know; pickleball is a newish pastime, having been developed in 1965.

Yet, despite its newness, pickleball has a sizable fan base as it seems that there are more than 3 million engaged pickleball players worldwide!

A fusion sport that reminds people of tennis, badminton, and ping-pong, it is a fascinating game that can keep your heart up and have you sweating if you engage in a competitive game.

But we are not here to talk about the specifics of pickleball but rather to figure out how many calories you can burn to play this sport.

How Many Calories Does Pickleball Burn?

The average individual burns approximately 75 calories per 10-minute session spent playing pickleball. Even so, as you probably understand, this precise figure varies depending on several factors.

It will, for example, depend on how intense the match you’re playing is, but a pickleball match could burn anything from 8 to 11 calories per minute.

Running will burn approximately 11 calories every minute. Considering this, pickleball is a fine replacement for running in terms of the calories burned.

Nevertheless, the total amount of energy and thus calories you will end up burning in a pickleball game will be determined by several variables, such as your gender, weight, and body mass.

This means that if you are a professional player (Find out How Much Do Pro Pickleball Players Make? or a fit gym goer, you will not burn the same number of calories as a pickleball newbie.

That is because your body is not a stranger to intense exercise and has learned how to preserve energy and control its oxygen consumption.

Moreover, playing pickleball for fun with a friend and at a moderate intensity also means that you will burn fewer calories than the pair next to you who engage in an intense game.

Example Of Calories Burned Playing Pickleball

How Many Calories To Play Pickleball?

A typical 40-year-old woman that engages in a game of pickleball will burn approximately 390 calories for every singles game, while the typical male player will burn approximately 448 calories. This is for one game of medium intensity lasting 45-50 minutes.

So, as you can understand, the amount of energy spent and thus calories burned when playing pickleball is determined by variables like one’s gender, weight, and age, as well as the duration of the play and its intensity.

The way each of these factors adds up to you as an individual, and the way you engage in the game can end up causing wild fluctuations in the number of calories you will burn.

Therefore, what you should do is make adjustments based on what was mentioned above and remember that when playing in doubles you will burn fewer calories than when playing solo.

How Are Calories Burned When Playing Pickleball?

The number of calories burned when engaging in all kinds of sports, including pickleball is not only instantaneous, that is it does not only happen while you play but continues after you’ve finished playing.

Young people also burn more calories than older people because their metabolism works better.

Moreover, the cardiovascular function of younger people is way better than that of older people, making it simpler to boost and maintain your pulse if you’re fit.

Of course, this does not mean that a fit older individual cannot burn more calories than an unfit young person, but the older someone is – especially after the age of 35 -, the fewer calories they typically burn.

Even more so in the case of pickleball where the average athlete or player is of 38 years of age, it makes more sense to focus on things like one’s BMR and weight rather than age.

Why Does BMR Matter When Counting Calories Burned Playing Pickleball?

The BMR is an estimation of the number of calories you really need for your everyday activities when leading a sedentary life.

It is the acronym for the Basal Metabolic Rate, which accounts for the functions our bodies perform just to keep us alive, such as cell production and breathing.

When you include activities like pickleball in your energy calculation, your BMR rises. This happens because the body requires more calories to supply you with more energy for your activity, and the higher the intensity of your game, the more calories are needed.

As a result, enjoying competitive games will require more energy and a greater calorie-burning than a leisure game.

Is Pickleball A High-Intensity Activity?

Pickleball is regarded as a high-intensity interval training, commonly referred to as HIIT. This means that pickleball involves intervals of strenuous movement alternated with intervals of activity of lower intensity.

HIIT can burn up to 30% more calories than other types of physical activity. Moreover, HIIT is also a type of activity that promotes EPOC, which stands for excess post-exercise oxygen consumption.

What EPOC means, in simple words, is that your body keeps consuming oxygen and thus burning calories even after you’ve finished your pickleball game and are taking your rest with your co-players.

As a result, even if you wore a FitBit whilst playing pickleball, you should expect more calories to be burned even after you took it off at the end of the game.

The Bottom Line

Pickleball can burn anything from 8 to 11 calories per minute if you engage in an intense game, but even then, variables like your age, weight, and metabolic rate will have an impact on your total calorie expenditure.

Damien Dansel
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