Is Pickleball Good Exercise? The Surprising Reality

Pickleball delivers a heart-healthy, full-body workout with moderate intensity, and calorie burning, making it a popular and enjoyable exercise option.

One of the most wonderful reasons players love to play this social sport is Pickleball. It engages the hands and feet muscles. Its constant movement for ball hits also enhances your physique. However, it’s an appropriate workout, inducing sweat and breathlessness, especially in tournaments. The fun workout Pickleball is played by utilizing the strength of players’ muscles.

Is Pickleball a health-boosting sport? Does Pickleball aid weight loss? Obviously, yes, these aspects are included in the gameplay. Once you may underestimate its calories-burning ratio, yet a lively game trumps treadmill time.

Is Pickleball Good Exercise and Physical Activity?

Pickleball demands quick bursts of movement, hand-eye coordination, require core strength, and Muscular endurance. It raises your heart rate and forces you to alternate between levels (start & stop), intensifying breathing and muscle fatigue. 

Furthermore, any activity boosting heart rate and oxygen intake is considered cardiovascular exercise. Pickleball game proves essential play for cardiovascular health. 

For most players, Pickleball is an excellent workout and outdoor recreation. The entertaining nature of this racquet sport is a bonus. Let’s further explore when is Pickleball good exercise, its benefits, efficacy, and integration into weekly routines.

Outdoor Pickleball

What is the optimal amount of Pickleball for Effective Exercise?

We analyzed that an average pickleball player acquires 150 weekly minutes of exercise. Suppose you’re playing 3 x 20-minute games twice weekly. Each hour of play covers 4,000 to 5,000 steps. This period may accomplish the national cardio recommendations. 

However, your consistent Pickleball drills and matches can amplify your activity. Meanwhile, another important element is your playing style’s intensity. It’s also more appropriate to play the dink than to play with total exertion. Now you must go for the doubles Pickleball for singles games for a more intense workout, like skinny singles for a great fitness boost. 

What is the calorie-burning rate while playing Pickleball?

Caloric expenditure during a workout depends on various elements like intensity, health, and weight. Recently, Pickleball became a trackable activity by multiple players on smartwatches like Apple, prompting them to share their calories burn data. 

They reported averages of 400 to 700 calories per hour and 8 to 11 calories per minute. This information resembles running’s calorie burn but comes with the bonus of paddle swings.

Pickleball is similar to interval training, combining bursts of exercise with waiting spring periods for action. Hence, regular running burns 11 calories per minute, while pickleball averages 8.

According to Gamma Sports, Pickleball can torch up to 600 calories hourly. While you’re willing to go for the usual tournament format of USAPA, two sets (2 hours) of play may burn around 1200 calories. This aspect makes Pickleball a rewarding workout as it’s played 2 of 3 matches to 11 scores in 50 minutes. You can burn 1200 calories per day from this racquet sport.

Does Pickleball bring positive effects on body management and weight loss?

Due to its low-impact exercise nature, Pickleball is effective for weight loss and entire management. It imparts enjoyable gameplay for a longer while. Thus, it burns calories similar to walking or biking, promoting cardiovascular fitness and joint health. 

Pickleball sport comes in flexibility training, as it is versatile and playable anywhere, whether you like to play indoors or outdoors. It’s suitable for people with physical limitations and maintains the metabolic rate. 

Ultimately, plenty of aspects make Pickleball a convenient choice for enhancing overall health and wellness. It brings positive effects on weight loss and body management.

Is Pickleball good exercise in the sense of a Dieting Plan?

Playing the Pickleball sport is quite favorable for all ages. It keeps you on the move, torching calories and gradually reducing body fat. It results in balance and stability among those with severe weight gain problems or imperfect diet plans. Although to play the sport consistently per week, you must take the appropriate diet. However, regular play can yield impressive results.

When you go for the tracking system (like the Apple Watch) to check the calorie burning rates, it exposes the almost 300-700 calories burning. Furthermore, this sport is played with the lighter 7-ounce paddle, compared to a tennis racket, ensuring comfortable gameplay for all.

Therefore, you can say goodbye to extra effort expenditure and hello to a spirited workout that also tones your biceps and triceps through dynamic ball hits.

Why is Pickleball Good Exercise for Seniors?

Pickleball offers seniors a fantastic workout. It is gentle on the arm, low-intensity, and strategically engaging. It’s because softball, compared to sports like Tennis, imparts a minimal risk of injury from powerful hits. 

Moreover, the Pickleball ball’s smaller, lighter design places less strain on joints than Tennis. The game demands your strategic eagerness and quick reactions that make it mentally stimulating. 

However, it’s not exclusive to seniors, and Pickleball mainly provides chance to ex-tennis players seeking fresh challenges. With its rising popularity, everyone can embrace this enjoyable and dynamic sport.

Benefits of Pickleball

  • Social Interaction: Pickleball supports socializing by accommodating pairs (singles with two gamers) or doubles play, encouraging teamwork and interaction.
  • Simple to Grasp: Pickleball’s resemblance to Tennis in rules makes it easy to learn. This Pickleball compact court reduces excessive running, especially in doubles, aiding ball tracking and strategic focus.
  • Hand-eye Coordination:  With old age, individuals lose control of hand-eye coordination and its common aspect. Pickleball counteracts this by focusing on reaction time and promotes sharp mental function.
  • Enhanced Health: International Journal of Research in Exercise Physiology reported that adults and older playing this sport thrice weekly for six weeks. They resulted in improved cardiorespiratory fitness, cholesterol, and blood pressure levels.
  • Safety Assurance: Besides the outdoor matches, indoor pickleball matches are suitable for hot days. Balls for these matches are designed appropriately, comprising holes, durable plastic, and moderate speed. It ensures minimal injury impact. However, the lower net height and underhanded serving reduce strain on arms. A lighter paddle (than that of Tennis) lowers impact stress to around 7 ounces.

Indoor Pickleball

Other benefits of pickleball Sport for health

  • Better sleep
  • Better hand-eye coordination
  • Better cardiovascular health
  • Burning calories
  • Combating fatigue
  • Reduce depression and improve the mood
  • Improving brain function
  • Serve your body well – a good workout
  • Reducing stress
  • Stabilizing high blood pressure

6 Tips for Newcomers Pursuing Fitness with Pickleball

Pickleball offers an attractive way to exercise and social interaction. To optimize your experience as a beginner, consider these essential guidelines:

  • Players must initiate their game gradually, progressively boosting their pace and effort as they improve.
  • Always choose the properly-sized pickleball paddle to ensure both power and control.
  • Maintain your position, ready to respond to the ball’s movement swiftly.
  • You must utilize your whole body to shield the ball from the opposite team.
  • Players may try to play singles and doubles games for added challenges and better engagement.
  • Prioritize a whole warm-up before each game to enhance safety and enjoyment.
  • Drink plenty of water (liquid)

If you have existing medical conditions or fitness concerns, consult your doctor before undertaking individual Pickleball sessions. Afterward, ‘is pickleball good exercise’ proves better.

Is Pickleball Sport Meeting the Intensity Guidelines?

US guidelines advise 150 mins of moderate or 75 mins of vigorous physical activity weekly. “Moderate” allows talking but not singing; “vigorous” is like jogging. 

When we figured out whether Pickleball fits, researchers tracked the heart rates and steps of 50+ players for an hour with warm-ups. 

Average: 3,322 steps/hr; 80% singles play = moderate intensity. But a twist: heart rates suggest more workout in singles and doubles. Heart rate matters, given elite athletes prioritize it over steps. However, pickleball sport is a low-impact exercise. 

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) nature of Pickleball spikes heart rate due to abrupt actions and stressing muscles. It exposes that steps are not enough for this. Furthermore, players’ mental health gains, regardless of play intensity or step count, make Pickleball worthwhile.

Bottom Row about ‘Is Pickleball Good Exercise’

Pickleball is a fantastic sport that offers a wide range of benefits for players of all ages and fitness levels. This aspect may confuse the people that it’s not an advanced workout or silly gameplay. Some individuals say it’s quite a simple and imperfect exercise sport for health. 

Remember, someone who relies on such misconceptions is one who has never stepped onto the court of Pickleball. Once you’re on the court, you quickly realize how engaging, entertaining, and physically demanding it can be. 


Ready to have a blast while staying healthy? Is Pickleball good exercise? Pickleball offers an enjoyable and effective way to stay active and improve your fitness. With its diverse physical demands, cardiovascular benefits, and positive effects on mental well-being, it’s no wonder that Pickleball is gaining traction as a go-to exercise option. 

Though it’s time to grab your pals and join the pickleball court. We ensure that your regular matches bring effective health improvement and appropriate drilling. Afterward, you can share your experience because it also proves the fuel for Pickleball Community.

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