The Best Forms of Cardio by Calories Burned

The Best Forms of Cardio by Calories Burned

Burning calories, not fat, is the key to losing weight. Running is always a safe bet to burn calories, but it does not burn the most. There are tons of other cardio forms that burn crazy calories. Here is a list of cardio exercises that burn the most calories:


Dancing can burn upwards of three hundred calories per hour, with numbers going up when structuring it for classes. According to a study by Luettgan et al., the typical Zumba class burns between six-to-seven calories per minute. Even recreational dance is a good workout providing you commit to the dance floor. Dancing is an excellent calorie burner and is fun enough to keep interest.

Jump Rope

Though simple, jumping rope is an amazing calorie burner. The childhood pastime can burn upwards of five hundred to eight hundred calories per hour depending on intensity. These caloric burns can only come about through consistency with the skips per min, so commit to your jumps.

Lap Swimming

Swimming is often an excellent way to cool off during the summer, but it doubles as one of the most effective exercises for burning calories. According to, swimming slowly for people of all weights burns between four hundred to six hundred calories per hour. Swimming with high intensity can bump those numbers further by up to two hundred calories.


Sports, as you might expect, are excellent workouts that keep your attention throughout. Nearly every sport burns upwards of four hundred calories per hour played. The more intense the sport, the more significant the burn. A few intense games of five-on-five basketball could burn nearly seven hundred calories over an hour span. Tennis and racquetball are another two of the top sports to play when burning calories, clocking in nearly the same amount of calories burned.

Row Machine

Rowing machines are a tool that people tend not to fully appreciate in their cardio regimen. While it seems simple and fairly easy, properly doing rows for an extended period can burn about five hundred calories over an hour of work. This comes with the additional benefit of getting a great back workout in the process. This video by Level Up Fitness gives more details about rowing machines.


While walks and jogs can do wonders for your physique, a hike is one of the best all-around cardio/fitness workouts you can get. Hitting some tough trails and higher elevations can burn upwards of four hundred calories or more per hour hiked. Spend a weekend hitting some trails, and you will definitely feel trim the following week. Hiking Science has a great personal calculator that can help you get a general idea of how many calories you will burn hiking. As with everything else, the more intense the hike, the greater the burn.

Weight Training

Even if running is not your thing, weight training burns a substantial amount of energy. Depending on body weight, weight lifting can burn between three hundred to four hundred calories each routine. Pumping iron five days a week could, therefore, theoretically burn off almost two thousand calories! Want to optimize your metabolism to help burn calories? Click here to see why drinking enough water is the key!  

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