Calories Burned Doing Squats

An increasingly popular exercise for the last few years is squats, and squats are an excellent way of toning your legs, thighs, and glutes. Another little known benefit of doing squats is that this exercise is also a great way to burn off calories. But how many calories burned doing squats? Well, that depends on the technique, how to do them correctly, and a clear understanding of how to burn the most calories within a given time frame.

How Many Calories Are Burned When Doing Squats?

There are various ways in which you can exercise doing squats, and you can even add some weights when doing them. When done right, these exercises can give you the kind of result that you can feel and see. The amount of calories burned doing squats also depends on the type of exercise performed, weight, age, and the intensity of the exercise.

MET and Calculation

Our bodies burn calories 24 hours a day. Even when resting, calories are used to keep body systems functioning properly. A way to measure the amount of calories burned when resting or engaging in activity is to apply the metabolic equivalent (MET) of a task value, which stands for the amount of oxygen you consume and the number of calories you burn at rest. While it is not possible to know exactly the amount of calories burned doing squats, you can calculate a close estimate using the MET value. Squats with normal effort have a MET value of 5.0, and if you are enhancing the squat exercises using weights, the MET value is closer to 6.0. The formula to calculate calories burned per session of exercise is:

(MET value x 3.5 x your weight in kilograms / 200) x duration of exercise in minutes

Note: To convert your body weight in pounds to kilograms, divide pounds by 2.2. For example, a 120 lb person will weigh 54.5 kg.The best way to estimate the amount of calories burned is using a calorie burn calculator.

Calories Burned Doing Squats

Body Weight

Calories Burned in Different Time

5 Min.

10 Min.

20 Min.

30 Min.

60 Min.

120 Pounds






150 Pounds






200 Pounds






250 Pounds






How to Do Squats Correctly

To increase the calories burned doing squats, do it properly!

  1. Start by placing your feet a little wider than your shouldersmaking sure yourhips are stacked over your knees, and your knees are stacked over your ankles.
  2.  Pull your shoulders down and away from your ears. This prevents unnecessary stress on your lower back.
  3.  Extend your arms straight out and parallel to the ground, with your palms facing downward, or if you prefer, pull your elbows close to your body with your palms facing each other, while pointing your thumbs straight up.
  4.  Initiate the squat by inhaling into your belly, then unlock your hips,andbring them slightly back as you begin to bend your knees.
  5.  Make sure your chest and shoulders stay upright, and your back stays straight when your buttocks start to stick out.
  6.  Keep your head facing forward and your eyes focused straight ahead to keep your spine neutral.
  7.  You'll want to let your hip squat lower than your knees, if it's comfortable. Note: try putting a box behind you and squat onto it by gently tapping the box with your buttocks as a reminder to squat low.
  8.  While engaging the core, exhale and rise back up using the heels of your feet back to the standing position. Try to imagine that you are spreading the floor with your feet without moving them.

For clearer instructions on how to do perfect squats, watch the video: 

How to Burn More Calories with Squats

As mentioned before that calories burned doing squats depends on various factors. The good news is that there're ways that you can burn more calories. In order to burn the most calories and get the most benefits within a time frame, consider using weights while you do squats. You will want to use weights that are heavy enough to work out your muscles doing 12 repetitions per session. A good way is to start with weights that you feel comfortable with, and a great way to measure your progress is to keep increasing the weights until you can barely complete the 12th squat. You can also do back barbell squats, or dumbbell squats to increase the calorie burn rate. Local gyms have machines for added resistance such as the hack squat or the Smith machine.

More Benefits of Squats

For many people, particularly women, the legs, thighs, and buttocks are troublesome. The good news is that squats are an excellent way of toning your legs, thighs, and are an excellent butt-lifter.

  • Squat exercises help tone and strengthen legs and calves by thoroughly engaging calf muscles, quadriceps, and hamstrings. The squats can be intensified by slowing down the motion when doing them.
  • Squat exercises are a powerful workout for the glutes, helping to tighten and lift the buttocks. You can increase the effect by giving your glutes an extra squeeze when you return to the standing position.
  • Squats engage the core muscles while toning abdominal and back muscles for better balance during movement. Squats result in a stronger lower back, with a tighter flatter abdomen. To increase the intensity, make an effort to hold in your abdomen muscles while squatting.
  • Squats give you a greater flexibility by working out your joints in the knees, ankles, hips, and lower back. Make sure you are keeping proper form to avoid any injury, and if you do feel any pain, stop doing them until the pain is gone.
  • The hip, knees, and ankles all work together to carry the body's load, and squats help strengthen the joints. When done correctly, squats can help you distribute your own weight and any other weight, such as lifting and toting.
  • A workout that includes squats helps build muscle and strength in the calves, quadriceps, and hamstrings, thus enable you to better lift and carry weight. Squats increase your stamina while toning your body.
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