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How Many Jumping Jacks Should You Do?

Jumping jacks can be helpful for certain fitness goals. Find out how many repetitions you should do for different purposes.

People who are considering implementing more jumping jacks often have weight loss as their main goal.

A rough estimation is that a 185-pound (83 kg) person will have to do about 12,012 jumping jacks to lose the calorie equivalent of one pound (0.45 kg) of body fat.

Keep in mind that whether these calories actually come from body fat also depends a lot on other lifestyle habits like what you eat.

Besides that, this same person would have to do around 343 jumping jacks to burn 100 calories.

Another interesting amount is that you have to do at least around 3000 jumping jacks a week to hit the cardiovascular exercise guidelines for adults from the ODPHP.

One more example is that you should do about 480 jumping jacks to get a similar cardiovascular workout as running a mile at a speed of 5 mph (8.1 kmh).

How many jumping jacks you should do to lose weight

Jumping jacks are mainly a cardiovascular exercise which means they can be helpful to improve cardiovascular health and lose weight.

Because you are moving more intensely than usual, your body needs more energy to function. This can get you to a point where you need more calories than are coming in from food.

If this is the case, your body starts using calories from energy stores like body fat.

As a first example, a 155-pound (70 kg) person will have to do around 14,337 jumping jacks to lose the number of calories in 1 pound (0.45 kg) of body fat.

Something important to keep in mind is that whether these calories come from body fat and in turn, whether jumping jacks help you lose weight depends a lot on lifestyle habits like your diet.

You can exercise a lot and gain weight with suboptimal habits in these other areas.

How many jumping jacks you should do to lose 1 pound

Let’s say your current lifestyle routine keeps you at more or less the same weight and the only change you implement is doing more jumping jacks.

Additionally, assume that the average person does around 40 jumping jacks per minute at a vigorous pace.

With these details and estimations of the calories you burn with this exercise, you can roughly predict that people of different body weights will have to do the following amounts of jumping jacks to lose 1 pound (3500 calories) of body fat:

Weight Loss Goal
Weight Person
1 Pound1 KG10 KG
125 Pounds (56 kg)17,778 jumping jacks40,635 jumping jacks406k jumping jacks
155 Pounds (70 kg)14,337 jumping jacks32,770 jumping jacks328k jumping jacks
185 Pounds (83 kg)12,012 jumping jacks27,456 jumping jacks275k jumping jacks
215 Pounds (97 kg)10,336 jumping jacks23,625 jumping jacks236k jumping jacks
How many jumping jacks to lose calorie-equivalents of weight

Keep in mind that these are very rough estimations. Details like your body composition, hormone levels, exact intensity, etc. could make the actual amounts different for you.

Additionally, the calorie-burning estimations do not include any afterburn effects where you use up more energy than usual even when you stop working out.

Besides that, you will also start burning fewer calories with the same workout as you lose more weight.

These things being said, these amounts do give you somewhat of an idea of how many jumping jacks you should do to lose certain amounts of weight.

So if a 155-pound person wants to lose 1 pound a week with jumping jacks, this individual would have to do around 2050 jumping jacks a day.

Whether this pound comes from belly fat, other areas, or other energy stores depends on things like your genes and weight loss journey progress.

How many jumping jacks to burn 1000 calories and other amounts

Another way to figure out how many jumping jacks you should do is by setting calorie-burning goals and calculating how many repetitions you need for these.

It becomes clear that while a popular goal like doing 100 jumping jacks a day is better than nothing, you will need more than that to burn significant amounts of calories.

Calorie Burning Goal
Weight Person
100 Calories500 Calories1000 Calories
125 Pounds (56 kg)508 jumping jacks2540 jumping jacks5079 jumping jacks
155 Pounds (70 kg)410 jumping jacks2048 jumping jacks4096 jumping jacks
185 Pounds (83 kg)343 jumping jacks1716 jumping jacks3432 jumping jacks
215 Pounds (97 kg)295 jumping jacks1477 jumping jacks2953 jumping jacks
How many jumping jacks to burn 1000 calories and other amounts

What you need to hit exercise guidelines

Losing weight may be the most popular one but jumping jacks offer a variety of other health benefits too.

For good general health, the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion recommends the following exercise guidelines to adults (1):

  • Moving more and sitting less throughout the day
  • At least 150 to 300 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 to 150 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity a week. Preferably spread throughout the week.
  • You can gain additional health benefits by engaging in physical activity beyond the equivalent of 300 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity a week.
  • Muscle-strengthening activities of moderate or greater intensity that involve all major muscle groups on 2 or more days a week.

If you consider them vigorous-intensity aerobic activity, that would mean you want to do at least 3000 jumping jacks a week to hit the cardiovascular exercise goals of the guidelines.

Let’s say you do this type of exercise 5 times a week. In that case, you could consider 600 jumping jacks to be a good workout.

Should you do them every day?

For resistance training exercises that involve bigger muscle groups, it is often recommended to implement one rest day for the muscles you just worked. You may wonder if this is the same for jumping jacks.

Whether you should do jumping jacks every day mostly depends on your current fitness level and training goals.

Exercise beginners may want to start with a light workout like 3 sets of 200 jumping jacks every other day to find out how their body reacts.

If this goes well, you can start increasing the intensity and frequency of your sessions.

Some people will find out that their bodies are currently not strong enough to do jumping jacks every day. However, many people should still be able to do this without issues.

Whether you actually want to do jumping jacks (every day) also depends on your goals. There are alternatives that could align more with your training goals.

Additionally, how much time you want to exercise depends on many details like how much time you have, how much you want to improve cardiovascular health, and how much weight you want to lose.

How many jumping jacks equals 10,000 steps

Two popular alternatives are walking 10,000 steps and running a mile. There are ways to estimate how many jumping jacks equal these amounts of exercise with MET values (2).

About 1750 jumping jacks (43.75 minutes) equals 10,000 steps of walking at 3 mph (4.8 kmh) (for 1.67 hours).

Next, the MET estimations for jumping jacks and running 5 mph (8.1 kmh) are basically the same.

That means about 480 jumping jacks will be equal to running a mile at a speed of 5 mph (8.1 kmh).

These are very rough estimations but they do give you somewhat of an idea about how many jumping jacks you need to do to get similar effects as walking and running certain amounts.

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Matt Claes

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.