Is Roller Skating Good Exercise For Weight Loss? (YES! Here are 10 Health Benefits)

Roller skating is a fun, calorie-burning activity that anyone of any age can do to burn calories, build muscles and sweat! When asked the question, “Is roller skating good exercise for weight loss,” I have to stop myself from screaming ABSOLUTELY!

10 Reasons Why Roller Skating is Good Exercise for Weight Loss

  1. Roller skating is a great workout because it burns calories and when we burn more calories than we consume, we lose weight.
  2. Roller skating builds muscles and (especially in the gluteus maximus) muscles burn more calories throughout the day (even when we’re just sitting around!)
  3. Roller skating makes us happy and happy people are generally healthier people.
  4. Roller skating can be practiced anywhere so there are no excuses not to do it.
  5. Roller skating is good for your heart and can bring you into that coveted “fat-burning zone” very quickly.
  6. Roller skating is gentle on your joints which means that no matter what your age or fitness level, it’s a low-impact activity (unlike running) that most can do.
  7. Roller skating improves balance, coordination and core strength which can lead to a slimmer, trimmer YOU!
  8. Roller skating builds endurance which means that you have more energy to do other physical activities that you love.
  9. Roller skating requires very little investment to get started. Once you’ve purchased a pair of skates and some essential safety gear, you’re good to go. There are no expensive gym fees or pieces of equipment to worry about.
  10. Roller skating can be done leisurely or competitively so if you’d like to just skate for fun, you can. OR you could also join a roller derby team if you want to get more serious about it.

As a cardiovascular exercise, there are so many health benefits (including weight loss) to roller skating. Click the links to jump to a specific section if you like and make sure you check out the FAQs too!

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woman standing on a scale

Is Roller Skating Good Exercise For Weight Loss? (In-Depth)

1. Roller Skating Burns Calories

As an aerobic activity, roller skating is great for burning calories. Now, I’m not going to say it burns “250 calories in 30 minutes” or anything like that because, to me, that is highly misleading.

The number of calories burned while skating will depend on many different variables and will vary greatly. Here are some of the variables that will have an impact on how many calories you burn:

  1. Are you male or female? Typically men have a higher metabolism and burn calories faster (but not always.)
  2. How fit (or not) are you? Generally, the more muscle you have, the more calories you will burn at any given moment.
  3. At what intensity are you skating? Obviously, the harder and more intense the skate, the more calories you will burn.
  4. What type of roller skating are you doing? Similar to intensity but, a leisurely skate around the park will most likely burn fewer calories (because it doesn’t raise your heart rate as much) than hitting up the skate park and doing some tricks!

As you can see, there are many different factors that come into play when it comes to caloric expenditure. However, no matter the circumstances, roller skating is a great way to get your calorie burn on.

2. Roller Skating Builds Muscles

Roller skating (as well as inline skating) is a great way to build muscle tone, especially when it comes to your lower body. When you skate, you’re engaging all of the muscles in your legs—quadriceps, hamstrings, calves, and glutes are all activated as you propel yourself forward with each stride.

This consistently works the muscle fibres and strengthens them over time, and it’s the best way to increase muscle definition. You’ll also notice an increase in strength in your upper body (specifically your core muscles) because you have to stabilize yourself with every stride.

Depending on your current fitness level you may start to notice muscle definition right away (if you’re already lean,) or it may take a bit more time to burn off some of the excess weight before you see those muscles popping.

Either way, know that you ARE building muscles and (as I said before) muscles burn more calories throughout the day. So just by doing “normal daily activities” like doing the dishes and watching tv, you will still be working towards your weight loss goals (especially if you also incorporate a healthy diet).

3. Roller Skating Makes Us Happy

Let’s face it, if we don’t enjoy the exercise that we’re doing, we’re probably not going to do it for long. And that’s why I love roller skating, not only is it a good workout but it’s fun and it doesn’t feel like exercise.

Don’t get me wrong, a good game of roller derby isn’t a walk in the park, but it isn’t as painful as slogging away on a treadmill for an hour either. When I strap on my skates I am instantly happy because it brings back those child-like memories of simply going out to play.

Roller skating can help you to clear your mind and (as with any physical activity) it helps to release “happy hormones” aka endorphins. You can make it even more fun by roller skating with your best friend (or group of friends) at the local roller rink.

4. Roller Skating Can Be Practiced Anywhere

All you need is a pair of roller skates, and you can literally skate anytime, anywhere. Now I know that if you live on a dirt road surrounded by cows and wheat fields, you might have a hard time finding somewhere to skate. But that’s not most of our cases.

Most of us live in towns, cities and communities that have beautiful paved trails, sidewalks and roads to skate on (at least in the summer.) My point is that you don’t need an expensive gym membership to enjoy roller skating, all you need to do is step outdoors and strap on those skates!

5. Roller Skating is Good For Your Heart

You don’t have to be a doctor to know that exercise in general is good for your heart. Heart disease is one of the number one killers across the globe and by combining aerobic exercises (like roller skating) with strength training, we can greatly improve our heart health.

Here’s a fun infographic by the American Heart Association if you want to learn more about how much exercise you should get every week (and at what intensity.)

6. Roller Skating is Gentle on Your Joints

Unlike other activities such as running and walking, roller skating is very easy on the joints (especially the knees.) When we run or walk there is a lot of jarring and jerking which can cause long-term damage over the years.

When we roller skate, it’s a fluid and smooth motion and very little stress is put on your joints. While high-impact activities (like running) can put a strain on the knees and other joints.

Roller skating provides a low-impact alternative that is far less stressful and still provides an effective workout. Moreover, it engages muscles all over the body, not just in the legs, helping to improve muscle strength and definition without subjecting your joints to too much stress.

7. Roller Skating Improves Balance, Coordination and Core Strength

Roller skating requires you to pay attention to your posture and movements in order to maintain balance. Additionally, the roller skating motion engages muscles all over the body which leads to greater overall muscle strength and coordination.

Skating works your abdominal muscles as you need to keep your core engaged in order to move forward. Finally, the action of pushing off with each stride helps build a strong lower body while also honing in on your balance and coordination.

8. Roller Skating Builds Endurance

The more often we skate, the more endurance we will build up. This means that no matter what activity we’re doing, we’ll be able to do it longer and more effectively.

All of a sudden you will be able to skate farther and faster, go on those intense hikes with your spouse and crush every workout at the gym. Physical activity should always be challenging, but the healthier (and fitter) we get, the more we will start to enjoy and crave it (which makes losing weight a lot easier!)

9. Roller Skating Requires Very Little Investment To Get Started

For under $200, you can get yourself some Impala roller skates, safety pads and a helmet. Roller skates, elbow pads, knee pads, wrist guards and a helmet are the only things that you need to get started with roller skating (safely). There are no monthly fees or anything else to worry about.

At some point, you may want to upgrade to better skates, wheels or bearings, but the cost cannot be an excuse for you to not get started. If I were just getting started, this is the set-up that I would buy:

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There are so many options to choose from but for beginners, I recommend Impala roller skates and Triple Eight protective gear. As you progress and get better, you may want to invest in some higher-quality skates, but it’s not necessary to get started.

10. Roller Skating Can Be Done Leisurely or Competitively

Hitting up the trails on quad skates is a great way to get some aerobic exercise. However, if you decide that you want to take your roller skating to another level, roller derby and skate parks can take you there.

I absolutely love roller derby (playing and watching) and it is such a fun sport to get involved in. Not to mention that it’s an excellent way to meet people with the same interest.

I find that practicing with a team really forces you to push your boundaries, increase your fitness levels and develop your skills on roller skates. Sound too intense? That’s okay. Simply strapping on a pair of roller skates (or inline skates) and cruising around the neighbourhood is an effective way to burn calories (and belly fat) too.

In Conclusion

I think I’ve made it pretty clear in this article that roller skating is a GREAT exercise for weight loss! Having to propel your own body weight around on 8 wheels is no easy task and as a result, your entire body will get an amazing workout.

If you really want to increase the weight loss effects, combining roller skating with a balanced diet (consisting of mostly healthy food) can take things to the next level.

I don’t skate nearly as often as I used to but I can tell you that when I was skating on a regular, weekly basis, I was the fittest that I have ever been in my life!

If you’re interested in roller skating, I’ve shared some of the best gifts and socks for roller skaters plus some of the top roller skate bearings if you’d like to give those a read too.


Can Roller Skating Help Lose Belly Fat?

While you can’t spot treat, when done regularly, it can help burn calories and reduce belly fat. Roller skating is a form of low-impact exercise which engages both the aerobic and anaerobic systems.

How Much Weight Can I Lose By Roller Skating?

How much weight you can lose by roller skating depends on a variety of factors, such as your current body weight, your diet and hydration level and the intensity at which you skate.

How Long Should You Roller Skate For Exercise?

If you want to reach the minimum recommended exercise per week goal of 150 minutes then I would suggest 30 minutes/day, 5 days/week. It also depends on your current fitness level and goals.

Can Roller Skating Get You in Shape?

ABSOLUTELY, roller skating can help you get in shape. Skating builds muscle (specifically in the core and legs) and it’s a good form of low-impact aerobic exercise that burns calories for weight loss.