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Is Pickleball Good Exercise?


By Kyle Whatnall

on Aug 25, 2023

Pickleball, a sport that has rapidly grown in popularity in recent years, offers not just fun and social interaction but also a range of health benefits. If you’re a beginner, you might be wondering if this paddle sport is the right fit for you in terms of exercise. Let’s dive in!

Is Pickleball Good for Losing Weight?

Absolutely! Pickleball can be a great cardiovascular workout. Depending on the intensity of play, a player can burn anywhere from 250 to 600 calories in an hour. The constant movements—running, lunging, and hitting—keep your heart rate up, making it an effective calorie burner. If you combine regular pickleball play with a balanced diet and other healthy lifestyle habits, it can definitely support weight loss.

What Does Pickleball Do for Your Body?

Pickleball offers a full-body workout. Here’s what it does:

  1. Cardiovascular Benefits: Continuous play increases your heart rate, improving heart health and stamina.
  2. Improves Balance and Agility: The sport demands quick direction changes, enhancing your footwork and overall agility.
  3. Enhances Reflexes: The quick volleys and fast-paced game style help improve your hand-eye coordination and reflexes.
  4. Joint Mobility: Regular movement and stretching, while reaching for the ball, promote joint health and flexibility.

Does Pickleball Build Muscles?

While pickleball is not equivalent to weightlifting, it does engage several muscle groups:

  1. Upper Body: Swinging the paddle works the arms, shoulders, and upper back.
  2. Core: Twisting, turning, and lunging engages the abdominal muscles, strengthening your core.
  3. Lower Body: Running and lunging will tone the legs, especially the calves, quads, and glutes.

In summary, while you might not bulk up like a bodybuilder, pickleball can certainly help in toning and firming various muscle groups.

Conclusion

For beginners, pickleball provides an exciting avenue to get fit, lose weight, and tone the body. With its myriad health benefits, it's more than just a game; it's an enjoyable pathway to better health. Whether you're looking for a fun way to spend your weekends or a new exercise routine, pickleball has something to offer for everyone. Grab a paddle and give it a try!

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