Squats are a basic exercise that anyone can do without special equipment. They work the muscles in your legs and can help improve your strength, flexibility, and balance.
Squats are also a functional movement: people squat when performing everyday activities, such as lifting boxes or playing with children. How Many Calories Do Squats Burn? It depends on a number of factors.
How many calories do squats burn
To know how many calories you’re burning squatting, you need to consider your body weight and the number of minutes you spend exercising, as well as the effort level (intensity) of your squat session. Intensity is also known as the Metabolic Equivalent (MET). For example, resting in a seated position has a MET score of 1.
The formula for calories burned per minute is = 0.0175 x MET x weight (in kilograms)
To find the MET value, you can estimate the value based on how you feel during exercise:
If you can hold a conversation while crouching, you’re probably performing the activity with light to moderate effort. This results in a MET value of 3.5.
If you run out of air while squatting, your effort is more vigorous. The MET value can rise up to 8.0.
Moderate exertion is easy enough to keep you talking. Vigorous or high-intensity exertion makes it difficult to speak and you have trouble breathing.
Here’s an example of using this formula for a 75kg person who did 5 minutes of high-intensity squats:
Enter the MET (8, for high-intensity squats) and number of kilograms (75) into the formula:
0.0175 x 8 x 75 = 10.5
Now take the number of calories burned per minute (10.5) and multiply it by the number of minutes of exercise (5):
10.5 x 5 = 52.5
So this formula shows that a 150-pound person doing 5 minutes of high-intensity squats burned 52.5 calories.
Here is an example of calories burned based on a range of exercise intensities and durations.
Range of calories burned for a person weighing 65 kg
low intensity (3.5 METS) high intensity (8.0 METS)
5 minutes 19 calories 44 calories
15 minutes 58 calories 133 calories
25 minutes 97 calories 222 calories
How to do squats
When done correctly, squats are an extremely safe exercise. The major muscles involved are the gluteus maximus, hip flexors, and quadriceps. The abs, calves, hamstrings, and lower back are also engaged.
Proper form is important to get the most out of your workout and protect yourself from injury.
The basic squat
First, stand shoulder-width apart, arms at your sides.
Inhale and bend your knees by pushing your hips back. Bring your hands together in front of your chest. You should stop lowering when your hips are lower than your knees.
Exhale as you press your heels into the floor to return to a standing position with your arms at your sides.
Tips for squats
Keep your chest up and your hips back to keep your back neutral and aligned.
Watch your knees when you are in a full squat. If they stick out past your toes, adjust your posture so they line up above your ankles.
When you stand up, rest your body weight on your heels, not your toes, to focus on the right muscle groups.
5 squats to try
Start by mastering the basics before moving on to variations. You can do three sets of a specific exercise of 8 to 15 repetitions. From there, you can move on to additional sets of 15-20 reps (or more).
Squats with dumbbells
Adding dumbbells to your squats can increase your muscle strength. If you are new to weights, start with light weights; You must be able to easily maintain correct form when using weights. You can always add weights once you feel comfortable.
Begin by placing your feet hip-width apart. With your arms bent, hold a dumbbell in each hand. The dumbbells should be just below chin height.
Inhale as you squat. Your elbows can even touch your knees.
Exhale as you return to the starting position.
Repeat the exercise to complete your set.
Maximum leg flexion
In conjunction with squats, it helps better activate the muscles of the inner thighs. You can do this variation with or without weight.
Start with your feet hip-width apart and rotated 45 degrees.
Inhale as you squat – your hips should be slightly lower than your knees.
Contract your glutes on the exhale and lift your heels into a standing position.
Repeat the exercise to complete your set.
Squat with lunge
You can also focus the energy of the squat on one leg at a time by going into a lunge position instead. This variant can also be performed with or without dumbbells.
Begin by placing one foot in front of the other in a lunge position. Your arms should be next to your body.
Inhale as you lower your back knee to the floor and bring your arms to chest height.
Exhale and squeeze your buttocks as you return to the original lunge position.
Do your reps on one leg before switching to the other.
The Bulgarian squat is performed the same way, but the back leg is raised a few inches off the floor on a bench. Start without weights until you find your balance.
Squat with jump
For more strength, try plyometrics. Jump squats are not recommended for beginners. They involve a force that can test the lower joints. Nonetheless, jump squats build explosive strength and speed that can be useful in a variety of sports, from sprinting to soccer.
Start in the easy squat position with feet hip-width apart and arms at your sides.
Squat down deeply and bring your arms behind you.
Then swing your arms forward and jump off the ground. Your arms should be above your head and your legs should be straight.
Return to the squat and repeat to complete your set.
Squat impulses train your muscles for the duration of the exercise. They’re less restrictive than jump squats, but they still increase the difficulty of a standard squat.
Get into a normal squat position and stay in the low position. Make sure your torso doesn’t lean forward over your legs.
Raise your seat a quarter of its height to the starting position, then lower it back down to your lowest squat position.
Continue pulsing for 30 seconds to a full minute.
You can combine pulses with jump squats. Squat down, do a push-up, and then jump off the floor. Return to the squat and repeat the exercise. Repeat and do two or three sets of 30 seconds to 1 minute.
What to remember
The number of calories you burn while squatting depends on your weight, the intensity, and the time you put in. Start slow if you’re a beginner and pay attention to your form so you’ll work the right muscles and protect yourself from injury. Once you’ve mastered the squat, you can try one or more of the many variations to get the most out of your workout.
* Presse Santé strives to convey health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO CASE can the information given replace the advice of a doctor.
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