How Many Calories Does Boxing Burn?

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Boxing is not only a fighting sport. It helps you move more intensely too. Find out estimations of how many calories boxing burns.

Some rough predictions are that the average person burns around 115 to 198 calories per 15 minutes of boxing in a sparring session.

You can definitely say that burning a lot of calories is one of the benefits of boxing. This can be especially useful if you like doing this activity.

Keep in mind that this is just a rough estimation. There are details that could change these actual numbers for your situation.

For example, the 115 calories burned with 15 minutes of boxing is an estimation for a 125-pound (56 kg) individual. On the other hand, the 198 calories are the prediction for a 215-pound (97 kg) person.

You can also find a more detailed chart for different body weights and time intervals below, how many calories different types of boxing training burn, and how to increase these numbers to get more results.

Biggest factors in calories burned with boxing

As briefly mentioned, estimating and figuring out how many calories you burn with an activity like boxing is hard to do.

This can make things confusing if you are trying to use these numbers to figure out what your diet should look like.

That being said, you can still make your calorie-burning estimations somewhat more accurate. Learning what things influence the actual amounts can help with this.

Additionally, this information can help you modify your boxing sessions in a way that makes them more effective in terms of burning calories.

A few of these details that influence your calorie-burning with boxing a lot are:

  • Body weight: Your body needs energy throughout the day to keep you alive and move around. Generally, a heavier body weight means burning more calories to do these things.
  • Body composition: Human bodies are made from different tissues like body fat and muscles. A certain weight in muscle tends to require more energy to maintain than the same weight in body fat.
  • Boxing speed: Not all boxing sessions are the same in terms of intensity. Moving and punching faster tends to burn more calories.
  • Boxing style: While this is somewhat related to speed, certain types of boxing styles promote fast movements more than others. This will influence how many calories you can burn.

Hidden calorie burning from boxing

On top of your exact details in the points above, there are even more things that make it harder to estimate exactly how many calories boxing burns.

These come from the fact that the extra energy you use thanks to a boxing session is not only limited to the workout itself.

More specifically, there is something called afterburn. You can describe this as burning some extra calories for some amount of time (typically not more than 72 hours) after an intense workout session.

This afterburn will likely not make or break your weight loss journey but it does add some extra results.

Additionally, resistance training beginners could build some muscle mass thanks to the plyometric (explosive) movements in boxing.

This extra healthy weight would help you burn more calories throughout the day and your other workouts.

Even if these more long-term effects do not make a difference of 100 percent, they could make your boxing sessions more effective than the estimations imply at first.

Chart of boxing calorie-burning estimations

The Centers For Disease Control And Prevention has a list that puts the number of calories burned with boxing into either between 3.5-7 calories per minute or more than 7 calories per minute depending on intensity and boxing style (1).

Luckily, there are ways to get more precise estimations for different body weights and boxing styles. To do this, you can use MET values.

These are estimations, and sometimes measurements, that describe how physically intense certain activities are. You can use these numbers in the formula below to estimate the calories burned with boxing.

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

Different sources can give different numbers but some examples of METs for boxing vary from 5.5 at boxing with a punching bag to 12.8 with in-ring boxing (2).

In the first table below, you can find how many calories different individuals can burn with boxing sparring sessions of different amounts of time.

After that, you can see rough predictions about how different boxing styles compare in this area.

Something to note again is that these numbers are not perfect. There are many relevant details that are missing from the MET formula above.

That aside, to get a better idea of what all these calories mean in practice, 100 grams of boiled potatoes contain about 87 calories (3).

Calories burned with boxing per time interval

Knowing roughly how many calories your 30-minute (or other time intervals) boxing session burned can be helpful.

Weight Person
1 Minute15 Minutes30 Minutes45 Minutes60 Minutes
125 Pounds (56 kg)8 calories115 calories230 calories346 calories461 calories
155 Pounds (70 kg)10 calories143 calories286 calories428 calories571 calories
185 Pounds (83 kg)11 calories170 calories341 calories511 calories682 calories
215 Pounds (97 kg)13 calories198 calories396 calories594 calories792 calories
Chart of calories burned with boxing in a sparring manner

Calories burned with types of boxing training

You may also wonder how your choice of boxing style influences your results.

In the table below, you can find rough estimations for punching the bag, shadow boxing, in-ring boxing, etc. These numbers are when boxing for 30 minutes.

Boxing Type
Weight Person
(Punching Bag)
Kick/Muay Thai
125 Pounds (56 kg)162 calories207 calories304 calories378 calories
155 Pounds (70 kg)201 calories256 calories377 calories469 calories
185 Pounds (83 kg)240 calories306 calories450 calories559 calories
215 Pounds (97 kg)279 calories356 calories523 calories650 calories
Calories burned per 30 minutes of boxing with different types of boxing training

Ways to burn more calories with boxing

By now you likely understand that you can influence how much energy you actually burn with boxing. There are a few ways you can see more results than the estimations above.

The first method is making your boxing sessions more intense. That tends to mean implementing faster movements but switching your boxing style can make a difference too.

If you really increase your intensity level enough, you could get some of the afterburn effect mentioned above.

Secondly, you can make the weight you move around heavier.

The most convenient way to do this is by implementing resistance training workouts to build muscle mass.

In theory, you could also wear ankle weights, a quality weighted vest, or weighted gloves.

Lastly, if your body can deal with it and you can fit it into your schedule, spending more time boxing tends to increase how many calories you burn too.

Woman boxing to burn calories

How long does it take to see results from boxing?

Burning more calories sounds and is nice but you are likely interested in whether boxing can help weight loss and in what amounts.

Something important to keep in mind is that moving more is not always enough to see weight loss results. You may need to implement changes in other lifestyle areas too.

That aside, if you assume all the calorie-burning comes from body fat, you can get a few rough estimations.

A 185-pound (84 kg) person would burn about 1023 calories or about 0.29 pounds (0.13 kg) of body fat by doing three 30-minute boxing sparring sessions in a week.

After implementing this same boxing workout routine for a month (four weeks), the same person would have burned an extra 1.17 pounds (0.51 kg) of body fat.

Keep in mind that as you lose more weight, boxing will start to burn fewer calories. To see the amount of progress, you will have to keep making positive changes.

Should you do boxing for calorie burning?

There are more effective alternatives too but you can definitely say that boxing can be good for burning a lot of calories in a shorter amount of time.

Especially if you really like boxing you can consider adding this activity to your exercise routine. Enjoying your workouts makes it easier to stay consistent which is helpful for long-term calorie burning.

If you decide to implement boxing or other cardiovascular workouts for this purpose, keep in mind that building some muscle mass with other exercises can be helpful too.

This extra muscle mass helps you burn more calories per minute of these other workouts and the rest of your day.

Lastly, keep in mind that losing weight is not only about the exercise you do. Other lifestyle habits like your nutrition play a big role too.

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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.