Whether you have played intense and competitive table tennis, recreational pass along among friends, or just watched it from tv, the question will arise at some point; does table tennis burn calories, and if so, how much? As a table tennis player myself with experience in all 3 of the mentioned, I’m eager to share my knowledge!
Table tennis does burn calories whether you play it intensively or with relaxation. However, the amount burned will vary depending on the player’s weight, intensity, and length of the game, and overall physique. A person who weighs 180lbs will burn 377 kilocalories per hour, on average.
As we can see, the amount burned isn’t an easy answer to determine, but the good thing is that it definitely burns calories, and the best part is that it is fun!
Next up, I need to explain further the factors that determine the burned calory amount so you can quite accurately guess your own calories burned. If you want to be more accurate, I highly recommend you using a smartwatch fit for calory counting if you want to see burned calories after each session, among other things.
Also, I have included a comprehensive table that roughly states burned calories per body weight/hour.
What affects the amount of burned calories in table tennis
There are 4 main factors that affect the calorie amount burned. First, let’s start with fitness level.
1. Fitness level
Your fitness level and endurance have much to do with the calorie amount burned within a table tennis game. As you do more and more physiological training, your body adapts, and your fitness level rises, which increases maximal heart rate. Therefore you will need to work harder each time for the same amount of calories.
The less you work out, the more calories you can burn in a single session because your body isn’t used to it. This is also backed up by a study made by the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Even tho the study was based on runners, the same principles hold in table tennis.
2. Game length
This one shouldn’t come as a surprise. Naturally, the game’s length has a major effect on the calories burned. For example, a person who weighs 170 lbs (77kg) burns approximately 267 kcal per table tennis game that is played as best of 5, which usually lasts 45minutes.
However, when we take one match from the total game of 5, the calorie amount is now reduced to around 53 calories per game, which usually lasts around 10 minutes.
As a takeaway, if you want to burn more calories, you should play table tennis a while longer!
3. Intensity of the game
The intensity of the game has a huge difference in the calories burned, especially in a sport like a table tennis.
If you have ever seen an Olympic match of table tennis, it is extremely intensive, to say the least. On the other hand, I don’t know if you have played a lazy pass along of ping pong with friends just for fun because I know I have, and the difference is drastic between the two!
If you want visual confirmation, you should check these two videos!
Professional table tennis match
Relaxed game of ping pong
4. Bodyweight & structure
Finally, your body greatly affects the calories you will burn during a table tennis match. Also, your body weight will determine your optimal daily calorie intake, so don’t think that different weighted people have an easier time losing weight, gaining muscle, or burning calories.
I gathered some information about different weight classes and their calories burned per hour so you can easily see your own numbers or at least close ones.
Take notice that this amount of calories will be burned in moderate intensity, but other factors such as the ones above will also determine the more accurate answer.
As said before, if you need accurate data, you should get a smartwatch with a calorie counter feature!
|130 lbs / 59 kg||272 kcal|
|140 lbs / 63.5 kg||293 kcal|
|150 lbs / 68 kg||314 kcal|
|160 lbs / 72.5 kg||335 kcal|
|170 lbs / 77 kg||356 kcal|
|180 lbs / 81.5 kg||377 kcal|
|190 lbs / 86 kg||398 kcal|
|200 lbs / 90.5 kg||419 kcal|
|210 lbs / 95 kg||440 kcal|
|220 lbs / 100 kg||461 kcal|
|230 lbs / 104 kg||482 kcal|
Is table tennis good for fitness
Table tennis is perfect for your fitness level because it improves your physical attributes such as endurance, explosive speed, reaction time, and reflexes. It keeps your muscles and joints active and in good health.
Table tennis also offers mind-body stimulation and social interaction, which is really important for the mental side of things.
Can you lose weight by playing table tennis
Table tennis is a great way to lose calories because if you play it intensively, it burns many of them, and it is fun as well. However, to lose weight, you need to monitor your calorie intake and eat less than the recommended amount. This is the most important step in losing weight.
Generally, you can determine your optimal daily calorie intake for weight loss by multiplying your body weight by 12 (in pounds). For example, if you weigh 180lbs, you would calculate as follows: 180×12 = 2160.
For maintenance calories, repeat this step but change the multiplier to 15 instead of 12. This way, you can find your optimal calorie intake for the day to maintain your body weight.
Which is the fastest racquet sport
Generally speaking, badminton is the fastest racquet sport in the world. Shuttlecock can reach a speed of over 264mph (426kph), and it is smashed every 1.8 seconds, on average. This requires the fastest reflexes and explosive speed in all racquet sports.
My Favorite Table Tennis Equipment
Thanks for reading this article. I hope it brought you great value that you can implement into your own life! Here you can find my preferred table tennis equipment that I believe you could benefit too!
- Racket: My favorite racket choice is the beautiful Killerspin Jet800 because it fits my offensive and speed-focused playstyle. The two carbon layers, 2.1mm sponge, and 190g weight makes this racket powerful.
- Ping Pong Balls: New technology and design have made the JOOLA Flash Seamless 3-Star Balls stand out from the other balls. These balls are seamless, meaning they are more durable than any ball with a seam! Even when these balls come at a higher price, they will pay themselves quickly. As a bonus, the design makes me excited!
- Table Tennis shoes: The famous Butterfly Lezoline Rifones is my choice as it is for many others because they are designed specifically for table tennis standards. I like the excellent support, comfortable cushioning, and lightweight sole with great traction, which gets you exploding fast to whatever direction you need to.
- Fan Equipment: If you’re a fan more than a player, you don’t want to miss Fan Equipment by Fanatics. You can find items from various sports that bear your favorite team’s logo, such as jerseys, gift ideas, or other surprising things.
Table tennis certainly does burn calories, and it is the perfect sport for having fun, losing weight, or both! Remember, if you want to burn more calories during a session, you need to turn up the tempo and smash that ball a little harder.
I hope that you enjoyed this article and you got great value from it. Personally, I love table tennis for many reasons, but when I need good endurance exercise, I usually turn to table tennis.