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How Many Calories Does BJJ Burn?

Dec 16, 2020

Posted by granite bay jiu-jitsu

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How Many Calories Does BJJ Burn?

Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a high contact, endurance sport that takes lots of high intensity training. It’ll definitely help you get into better shape, lose weight, and increase your overall stamina and fitness. According to fitness app estimates, half an hour of Brazilian jiu jitsu sparring burns more than wrestling, jogging, swimming, and even playing basketball for that same amount of time. 

Competitive jiu jitsu requires a level of muscular strength, endurance, flexibility, and mental fitness. It’s no surprise that jiu jitsu burns hundreds of calories per hour, and can help you build muscle and is one of the best ways to lose weight.

If you're looking for a great way to get in shape, learn a new skill, and have fun, keep reading and check our our BJJ Caloric Burn Calculator below. And definitely check us out with a free week to your local Roseville Marital Arts studio!

Will Jiu Jitsu Help With Weight Loss?

There are several reasons why jiu jitsu burns so many calories and can help you lose weight. You might not even have to follow a strict diet to see results either! High intensity activity of any kind, especially jiu jitsu, results in more calories out than in. The result? Weight loss. 

Another reason you’ll burn more calories and could lose weight is that you’ll spend less time eating and drinking, because you’ll have something better to do in the mornings or afternoons instead. This time might otherwise have been used to stuff your face with chips while sitting on the couch, but not anymore. Jiu jitsu is a commitment to improving your health and losing weight.

We are influenced by the people we surround ourselves with. If you attend jiu jitsu classes, chances are you’ll be surrounded by people who value their health and live an active, healthy lifestyle. As you befriend these types of people, you’ll see a drastic improvement in the life choices you make, and the food you eat. 

Finally, feeling healthier and looking more fit motivates you to keep active and push yourself in jiu jitsu. Seeing results is the best motivation to keep burning calories and losing weight. Many people report losing weight with Brazilian jiu jitsu within the first few months of training. This is accomplished by reducing their body fat percentage, increasing muscle mass, and maintaining a healthy diet.


How Many Calories Does Jiu Jitsu Burn?

There are a lot of variables in calculating how many calories Brazilian jiu jitsu burns. One of which includes your physical size, like your height and weight. If two people, one much taller and heavier than the other, are performing the same movement over and over, the larger person will burn more calories simply because they are moving more weight. 

The other variable is the intensity that you are training at. Training more slowly and at an easier pace will burn fewer calories. On the other hand, training intensely at a hard pace will burn much more calories. This concept applies to any sport or exercise.

According to the My Fitness Pal calculator, a person who weighs 180 lbs and does Brazilian jiu jitsu will burn 412 calories in half an hour, and 825 calories in an hour. They don’t specify if this includes stretching or sparring, so let’s break it down some more.

The average Brazilian jiu jitsu class includes stretching, calisthenic warm ups, technique drills, and rounds of sparring. Since sparring is very intense and increases the heart rate so much, it’s only done in intervals for a few minutes at a time.

To calculate how many calories you’re burning, take calories burned per hour (a predetermined constant) multiplied by your body weight, then divided by 60 minutes. Take that number and multiply it by however many minutes you do the exercise for. For the following example, we’ll use a 180 lbs person.

  • Stretching for 5 minutes: [(1.81 x 180) ÷ 60] x 5 = 27 calories
  • Calisthenics for 15 minutes: [(2.43 x 180) ÷ 60] x 15 = 109 calories
  • Jiu Jitsu Technique for 15 minutes: [(3.25 x 180) ÷ 60] x 15 = 146 calories
  • Sparring for 25 minutes: [(4.87 x 180) ÷ 60] x 25 = 365 calories

For an hour of jiu jitsu, a person who weighs 180 lbs will have burned about 647 calories. That’s one hell of a workout! 

As you can see, the calories burned per hour is highest for sparring, therefore the longer you train, the more calories you will burn. Just adding another half hour of sparring will burn over 1,100 calories!

How Does Jiu Jitsu Compare to Other Workouts?

As you can see, you will burn hundreds of calories every time you train for jiu jitsu. It’s a high intensity exercise that will improve your fitness and help you build muscle and lose weight along the way. But how does it compare to other workouts?

Let’s compare wrestling, another contact sport. According to My Fitness Pal, a person who weighs 180 pounds will burn about 500 calories in an hour, which is less than jiu jitsu. What about swimming laps with moderate effort? For an 180 pound person, they will burn about 572 calories per hour--more than wrestling, but still less than jiu jitsu. Playing a game of soccer for a whole hour also burns about 572 calories. Hiking and climbing hills for an hour still does not burn as many calories as jiu jitsu, believe it or not. Circuit training, kickboxing, and boxing are the only workouts that compare to an hour’s worth of calories burned from jiu jitsu.

7 Day Free Trial

Now that you’ve seen just how many calories you can burn just from Brazilian jiu jitsu, we hope you see how beneficial it could be to your health. Jiu jitsu builds strength, muscle mass, endurance, flexibility, not to mention reduces body fat and burns a crazy amount of calories, resulting in weight loss.

Granite Bay Jiu-Jitsu is perfect if you’re just starting out, or wanting to push yourself to the next level. If you’re in the Roseville or Granite Bay Area, check us out and give our free 7-day trial a shot!

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