Running, swimming, tennis, rugby… How to choose THE right activity to burn a lot of calories and sculpt your body? Which sports burn the most energy? Here are the top 10.
First, it is better to know exactly what we are talking about. A calorie is a unit of measurement of the energy contained in a certain quantity of food, generally 100 grams. You find this indication on the back of the packaging of the majority of the products you consume. By eating, we absorb calories. Some are spent by the body naturally, via its basic metabolism: the functioning of organs or even digestion. Others can end up stored there in the form of fat and turn into « love handles », if one remains inactive. Calorie intake and expenditure inevitably have an impact on our weight variations…
The higher the intensity of the sport, the more calories you expend.
The basic rule is therefore the following: combine healthy eating and physical activity. One does not go without the other for those who want to keep the line or slim down. The Ministry of Health recommends, on its website, to “perform 30 minutes of physical activity, developing cardiorespiratory fitness, of moderate to vigorous intensity, at least five days a week”.
We contacted Prof. Martine Duclos, endocrinologist and physiologist, head of the sports medicine department at Clermont-Ferrand University Hospital (Puy-de-Dôme): « The more the muscle mass is active during sporting activity, the higher the energy mass burned will be », she explains. Clearly, the more a sport is performed at high intensity, the more calories you burn.
The 10 most effective sports for burning calories
The highly reputed Mayo Clinic, an American university hospital and research federation, based in Rochester, Minnesota, goes further. Based on a study conducted by the National Institutes of Health (governmental health institutions in the United States), it has established the list of the 36 most effective sports for burning calories. We present to you the top ten. The number of calories is calculated for a person of 73 kg and for a « normal » effort of one hour.
10e. Roller: 548 kcal. In addition to being trendy, rollerblading solicits the whole body and draws it. Result: many calories eliminated, weight loss, toned and shapely buttocks, toned quadriceps and calves and top cardio.
9e. Basketball: 584 kcal. Hop, a basket! Excellent for cardio, basketball, high intensity sport, also allows you to burn many calories.
8e. Rugby: 584 kcal. The Mayo Clinic takes the example of “flag football” which is more like rugby than football (soccer). Races, accelerations, throws… Rugby is tactical and cardiac. A very complete sport, ideal for strengthening the muscles while suppressing the « bad fat » that would like to stick to it.
7e. Tennis: 584 kcal. Losing fat and getting thinner is also the promise of tennis. If it is practiced in an active way (we move on the court, right!), it mobilizes the majority of the muscles of the body: the thighs, the calves, the arms, the buttocks or the abs. Say goodbye to calories. A part ?
6e. Running at 8 km/h: 606 kcal. A long, one-hour jog at a moderate pace, or even a slow pace (you must be able to talk), presto, that’s 600 kcal in less than one go! Better: a slow jog (or brisk walk) on an empty stomach. “To lose weight, the goal is to use your lipids (fats) rather than your glycogen (sugar) stored in your muscles,” explains Martine Duclos. By running on an empty stomach, you can « trap » the body, which has no sugar reserves when you wake up, and thus « type » in fat.
5e. Stair running: 657 kcal. Staircase or hill work is also very interesting. It stings, of course, but in addition to eliminating nearly 700 kcal, this type of exercise helps tone the legs and strengthen the abs.
4e. Swimming: 715 kcal. Oh, swimming! It brings all the benefits of other sports, without the risk of injury… Arms, abs, legs, buttocks work. Legs become stronger, thinner, breathing is reborn and the calories from the burger swallowed at noon are quickly eliminated, thanks to the resistance of the water. In addition, the « massaging » effect of the water on the body helps to erase the orange peel…
3e. Taekwondo: 752 kcal. Want to let off steam? Why not practice a combat sport? With all these kicks, the muscles are boiling and the calories are flying!
2e. Skipping rope: 861 kcal. The essential sports accessory: the jump rope! In addition to taking you back to childhood, the jump rope can help you keep or find the line! It contributes to a toned silhouette, thanks to the repetition of dynamic supports. All the muscles are solicited and, as a result, the counter of calories eliminated explodes: nearly 900 in one hour… All this, without almost realizing it!
1er. Running at 12.8 km/h: 861 kcal. On the highest step of the podium, tied with the skipping rope, we find running, but this time it is running at an accelerated pace. Jogging is very good, but to sharpen – and improve – split sessions are also welcome. For example, try 10 x 1 minute at high speed.
But also… Follow, beyond the 10e position, ice skating, cross-country skiing, water skiing, rowing or hiking. But before rushing to the sport that will burn the most calories, keep in mind that sport must rhyme with pleasure. Hence the importance of choosing above all the one that you like the most. Go!