How to Lose Weight Whilst Playing Guitar

Do you get enough exercise?  Honestly?  Yeah, I thought not.

And to be fair, who does? We live in a time-starved society where every minute counts and finding time to exercise can be challenging. Playing guitar does burn a few calories, but by making one very simple change to your practice sessions you can double, if not triple your energy expenditure. Kill two birds with one stone – improve your guitar skills and improve your health.

How Many Calories Do I Burn Playing Guitar?

The graph below shows roughly how many calories you will burn per hour whilst playing a variety of different instruments. These values are based on an average male who weighs 80kg, or around 175 pounds in old money.

Musical instrument calories burned graphAs you can see, with the exception of the accordion, guitar is dead bottom of the barrel. The lowest of the low. Assuming that you are sitting whilst practicing you are only going to be burning a paltry 80 calories every hour. And let’s face it, we all sit when we practice – right?

But take a look at what happens to that number by simply getting off your ass and standing up. You’ve got legs right? Use them! Suddenly you are burning 159 calories per hour – an increase of almost 100%. Playing guitar and moving around will further ramp up the numbers to 239 calories per hour!

If you weigh more, you burn more.  If you play more, you burn more. If you move more, you burn more.

Say that you manage to play guitar for one hour every day.  By standing rather than sitting you are burning an extra 79 calories per day, or 553 calories per week. To put that into perspective, 553 calories burned is roughly equivalent to:

  1. Going for a 5 mile jog
  2. Stationary exercise bike for 1.25 hours at moderate pace
  3. Swimming for 1 hour (crawl)
  4. Going for a 4 hour leisurely walk

And you can expend all of this extra energy by just standing up. It’s not exactly a big ask is it? And you’re burning all of those extra calories without losing any precious extra free time.

As a modern society relying heavily on technology, we spend far too much time sitting down. It’s not natural! Make this one tiny change to your practice sessions. What have you got to lose, besides a few unwanted pounds?

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Neal Author Bio
Neal has been playing guitar (left-handed!) for over 20 years, and has also worked in various roles within the guitar retail industry since 2012. He started LeftyFretz in 2010. More Info