How Many Calories Does Bowling Burn?

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Calorie-burning effects are hidden in a variety of activities. Find out how many calories bowling burns and how to increase this number.

A rough estimation is that the average person will burn around 112 to 193+ calories per 30 minutes of bowling.

These numbers are not the biggest but one of the benefits of bowling is that is so fun that many people simply do it to have a good time.

In that case, the extra calorie burning is a nice bonus.

Something else to note is that your individual body weight will influence the estimations (and results) a lot.

For example, the 112 calories burned with 30 minutes of bowling is the estimation for a 125-pound (56 kg) person. On the other end, the 193 calories are the estimation for a 215-pound (97 kg) individual.

That aside, I will also go over more in-depth estimations for different body weights and time intervals, other details that influence your results, and how to burn more calories while bowling.

Biggest factors in calories burned with bowling

It is hard to put a correct number on how many calories a person will burn with an activity like bowling. There are just so many details that influence the actual results.

That being said, you can still make your estimations just a bit more accurate by taking a few important factors in mind.

This will make it somewhat easier to figure out things like what your diet should look like for goals like losing weight.

Knowing about these factors can also help you understand how to modify your bowling sessions to burn more calories.

With that in mind, some of the details that influence your energy usage while bowling are:

  • Body weight: Your body burns calories to keep you alive and move you around. Generally, weighing more also means burning more calories to do these things.
  • Muscle mass vs body fat: People of the same body weight can burn different amounts of calories. One reason for this is that muscle mass tends to require more energy than the same weight in body fat.
  • Bowling intensity: Faster movements tend to burn more calories. Rolling a ball and then waiting for your turn for 5 minutes tends to require less energy per minute than rolling ball after ball in a solo training session.

Chart of bowling calorie-burning estimations

While they are not perfect, there are ways to estimate how many calories you burn with something like bowling a bit more precisely.

More specifically, there are these numbers called MET values. These are estimations, and sometimes measurements when studies are available, of how physically intense activities are.

You can then use these MET values in the formula below to get an idea of the number of calories burned with bowling.

Formula: METs x 3.5 x (your body weight in kilograms) / 200 = calories burned per minute

Bowling MET estimations can vary but one source mentions an MET of 3.8 for indoor bowling (1). You can find the results of using this MET for different body weights and durations in the table below.

It is worth mentioning again that your actual results can vary due to many details. You should not panic if your weight loss results are not perfectly what you expect.

That aside, you may find it easier to get a feel of what these numbers mean by knowing that 100 grams of boiled potatoes contain about 87 calories (2).

Weight Person
1 Minute15 Minutes30 Minutes45 Minutes60 Minutes
125 Pounds (56 kg)4 calories56 calories112 calories168 calories224 calories
155 Pounds (70 kg)5 calories70 calories139 calories209 calories278 calories
185 Pounds (83 kg)6 calories83 calories166 calories249 calories332 calories
215 Pounds (97 kg)6 calories97 calories193 calories290 calories386 calories
Calories burned with bowling

Ways to burn more calories with bowling

The table above may give the feeling that the number of calories burned with bowling is something static. However, there are definitely ways to increase your results too.

First of all, you can make the weight you have to move around heavier. This will make it so your body has to expend more energy while bowling.

One way to do this is to build muscle with weight lifting workouts. You could also use a heavier ball if this does not interfere with your performance and fun.

In theory, you could wear a light weighted vest but this will likely get in the way and not be worth the few extra calories your burn.

Secondly, if you are solo bowling, you can burn more calories by making your sessions more intense. In simpler words, by rolling the ball more often per time frame.

Lastly, you could make your bowling sessions longer and do them more often. This will generally burn more calories.

Person burning calories with bowling

How long does it take to see results from bowling?

Burning calories sounds and can be nice but you are likely interested in the result of this. More specifically, what weight loss results bowling offers.

Something to note first is that moving more does not always lead to fat loss. Your habits in other areas like your diet still need to be good enough.

That being said, to get some estimations, you can temporarily assume all the extra calories you burn with bowling will come from body fat.

A 185-pound (83 kg) person bowling for 30 minutes three times in a week will burn an extra 498 calories or about 0.14 pounds (0.06 kg) of body fat.

If the same person bowls this many times a week for a month (four weeks), they would burn an extra 1992 calories or about 0.57 pounds (0.25 kg) of body fat.

These are not the most impressive numbers ever but the extra amounts do add. Keep in mind that you will burn fewer calories with bowling as you lose weight.

Should you do bowling to burn calories?

If burning the most calories in the shortest amount of time is your goal, bowling will not be the best exercise option in terms of results.

You should see these results more as the positive side effect of doing something fun.

Even if you are looking for a fun activity that you can easily sustain, you should be able to find something that burns more calories than bowling.

Keep in mind that seeing weight loss results is not only about burning more calories.

What lifestyle areas like your diet look like will influence whether the calorie-burning from bowling actually helps you lose weight.

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Matt Claes founded Weight Loss Made Practical to help people get in shape and stay there after losing 37 pounds and learning the best of the best about weight loss, health, and longevity for over 4 years. Over these years he has become an expert in nutrition, exercise, and other physical health aspects.