Weight Loss Workouts

Why You Need to Try Rollerblading For Weight Loss

Many people rollerblade for the sheer fun of it, but did you know that rollerblading for weight loss is also a great reason to take up the sport? A big part of weight loss is finding an activity that you love to do and want to do regularly. If you’re not one for jogging on a treadmill or taking an aerobics class, you might need to think outside the box. Rollerblading, also know as inline skating, is a great way to burn calories and have fun at the same time.

Does Inline Skating Help You Lose Weight?

Any activity that gets your heart rate up and increases heat in your body will help you lose weight. As the demand on your heart, lungs, and muscles increases so does the demand for energy in the form of calories. Fat is your body’s main source of energy. As you burn calories, you also burn fat stores. When you do this regularly, and eat a calorie-controlled diet, you will deplete stored fat and lower your body fat percentage.

You might be wondering just how many calories rollerblading burns. That depends on a lot of factors, including your age, gender, bodyweight, conditioning, genetics and the climate, among other things. Men generally burn more calories than women because they have greater muscle mass. The heavier you are the more calories inline skating burns because you have to expend more energy to move that heavier weight forward. However, the more conditioned, or physically fit, you are, the fewer calories rollerblading burns because your heart, lungs, and muscles don’t use as much energy as someone who isn’t in good physical shape.

You’d be surprised how big a role genetics plays in calorie-burning. Actually, genetics plays a big role in weight loss overall, not only rollerblading for weight loss and calorie burning. Some people just have a higher metabolism and burn more calories in general, during exercise or while at rest. Lastly, the weather has an impact how many calories you can burn rollerblading. On a hot day, your lungs and heart work harder and therefore require more fuel in the form of calories; on a cool day, you’ll likely find any type of exercise easier, which means you’re burning slightly fewer calories.

inline skating for weight loss

Harvard Health Publishing provides some estimates of how many calories a person of a certain weight will burn in 30 minutes doing different activities. A 125-pound person can expect to burn around 311 calories rollerblading at a casual pace for a half hour and 421 calories rollerblading at a fast pace. A 155-pound person may burn more: 386 calories at a casual pace and 421 calories at a fast pace. For a 185-pound person the calories burned rollerblading increase to 461 at a casual pace and 503 calories at a fast pace.

Those are some pretty impressive numbers. According to Harvard’s estimates, rollerblading for 30 minutes at a casual pace burns more calories than running at a pace of 6 miles per hour, swimming laps vigorously, and cycling at a pace of 14 to 16 miles per hour. Thirty minutes of inline skating at a fast pace burns about as many calories as cycling at a pace of 16 to 19 miles per hour a jumping rope vigorously.

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Weight Loss Benefits of Inline Skating

We’ve established that rollerblading for weight loss is going to burn a lot of calories. But it’s not just the calories burned while rollerblading that make a difference. You’re also building muscle, and having more muscle helps you burn fat.

When you’re inline skating, you’re working all the major muscle groups in your lower body — your hamstrings, quadriceps, and glutes. These muscle require a lot of energy to grow and maintain. In fact, muscle in general burns way more calories than fat — it’s more metabolically active. According to Len Kravitz, PhD., and Paige Kinucan of the University of New Mexico, muscle accounts for 20 percent of total daily energy expenditure, whereas fat only accounts for 5 percent. That means the more muscle you have the more fat your body burns all day long — even when you’re not doing anything!

Rollerblading and other forms of exercise are also good ways to relieve stress, which will also aid weight loss. Did you know that stress is a major contributing factor to weight gain and obesity? According to research published in the Annual Review of Psychology in 2019, stress:

  • interferes with cognitive function and self-regulation
  • induces overeating, especially high-calorie junk foods
  • triggers physiological changes in the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, reward processing in the brain, and possibly the gut microbiome
  • triggers production of huger hormones and suppresses satiety hormones

Fun activities like inline skating that don’t involve going to the gym — which can often feel like a “chore” for some people — are great ways to get your exercise and shake off some stress while you’re at it. You can take a break from your daily responsibilities, strap on your skates and head out to the park. Getting some fresh air and sunshine, talking and laughing with friends, if you choose to skate with others, and getting your heart rate up are some of the best ways to feel calmer and more relaxed.

how many calories does rollerblading burn

How to Get Started With Inline Skating for Weight Loss

If you don’t already know how to rollerblade, the activity could seem quite intimidating. Is it hard to learn? Is it dangerous? Am I even able to do it? Yes, yes, and yes. It is challenging to learn, it can be dangerous, but you can totally do it, as long as you don’t have any pre-existing health conditions or injuries that would make it unsafe. Be sure to check with your doctor before tying up your skates.

First things first: You need the right equipment for rollerblading for weight loss. A good place to start is your local sporting goods store or skate shop. A knowledgable staff person can tell you your options and help you get the right fit. You can also check out some well known online retailers such as Rollerblade.com.

So what should you look for in a beginner skate? According to skatingmagic.com, the best rollerblades for beginners have:

  • a high, supportive cuff
  • moderately tall and soft wheels — 80mm is a good size for newbies
  • a sturdy, low frame for stability

Some models to check out include:

1. Rollerblade Zetrablade Elite Women’s Adult Fitness Inline Skate, Black and Powder Blue, Performance Inline Skates

2. 5th Element Panther XT Mens Recreational Inline Skates – 13.0/Black-Gray

3. Roller Derby Aerio Q-60 Women’s Inline Skates – White/Grey – Size 08

4. K2 Skate Men’s Kinetic 80 Inline Skate, Black_RED

5. 5th Element Lynx LX Womens Recreational Inline Skates, Black and Pink – 10.0/Black-Violet

Skates aren’t all you need for an enjoyable experience when you’re learning to rollerblade for weight loss. You’re also going to want some protective gear, because there’s a pretty good chance you’re going to fall at least once, if not more.

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A helmet is a must. The Triple Eight Sweatsaver Liner Skateboarding Helmet, Baja Teal Rubber, Small is a great option for men, women and children. Another option is the Triple Eight Dual Certified Bike and Skateboard Helmet, Black Matte, Small / Medium. You’re also going to want some protective padding for your knees, elbows and wrists.

Now that you’re geared up, start learning the basics with some YouTube videos. Check out this one with Miss SkatefreshAsha. She seems to have a pretty good strategy for getting up and going without getting hurt.

What Else Should You Know About Losing Weight With Inline Skating?

As with any activity, start out slow so you avoid overdoing it and injury. Muscle strain and broken bones are a real risk with skating, but they can be avoided by being conservative with your efforts. Don’t get too tired, because that’s when injuries tend to happen. Take days off between skating sessions to let your muscles recover.

You should also cross-train. Mix up your routine by rollerblading one day, lifting weights the next, doing yoga another day, and rollerblading again. It’s better for your body to have variety, and it keeps your exercise routine interesting.

Rollerblading burns a lot of calories, but remember that to lose weight you have to stay in a calorie deficit. You can rollerblade every day, but if you’re eating too much or eating the wrong foods, you’ll gain weight. Activity always has to be combined with a healthy calorie-controlled diet.

Most important: don’t give up when the going gets tough! Learning a new sport is challenging but so rewarding! You’ll have days where you feel like you have two left feet, but when you finally get into the groove the feeling will be unbeatable.

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10 Lifestyle Changes Needed For Effective Weight Loss

Jody Braverman, NASM-CPT, NASM-FNS, PN1

Jody Braverman is a certified nutrition, fitness, and weight loss expert who has been working in the health & fitness industry for over two decades.

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