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How Many Calories Do You Burn with Stand Up Paddle Boarding?

How Many Calories Do You Burn with Stand Up Paddle Boarding

Paddle Boarding is one of the most enjoyable exercises. Once you get started, you cannot get enough of it. You will find yourself in the water, whenever you have some time to spare.

Everyone knows that standup paddle boarding is not just about fun. It comes with tremendous health benefits and helps with weight loss.

Speaking of weight…

How many calories will you burn standup paddle boarding? Since you will be spending a lot of time SUPing, it is important to know the number of calories burned. This will help you with your fitness goals.

RELATED: Read our top stand up paddle board reviews for 2024.

Key Takeaways

  • Paddle boarding is a fun and healthy exercise that burns calories depending on the type, intensity and duration of the activity.
  • The number of calories burned also depends on the body size, pace and technique of the paddler.
  • The most intense type of paddle boarding is SUP racing, which can burn up to 1125 calories per hour.
  • The least intense type of paddle boarding is recreational SUP, but it’s still good exercise!
  • Other types of paddle boarding such as SUP surfing, SUP touring and SUP yoga can burn between 416 and 735 – calories per hour – but these can vary according to different factors. Read on for a proper run-down of calories burned during SUP

SUP Calories Calculator


According to Captain Calculator, a person weighing 100 pounds uses 286 calories in one hour of paddle boarding. A 200-pound SUPer would lose 573 calories.

The above numbers are estimates. There are several paddle boarding types such as paddle board racing, yoga and recreational paddle boarding. The number of calories you burn SUP racing is definitely higher than you would burn with leisure SUP.

So, let us look at each activity individually.

Calories Burned Paddle Boarding for Each Type of SUP

a. Calories Burned SUP Racing


This one is the most intense of them all. The number of calories you burn SUP racing is crazy, from about 713 to 1125.

Throughout the entire race, the body is working very close to your maximum heart rate. You are going fast and hard.

At that rate, you cannot hold a conversation.

With SUP racing, energy is not required for paddling only. You are still on the water and you have to maintain balance—which is harder to do when you are paddling and moving fast. You also face resistance from the wind and water conditions may not be working in your favor.

b. Calories Burned SUP Surfing


Catching waves on your paddleboard is thrilling. So much so that you may not realize how much work you are putting in.

When it comes to burning calories, it is one of the best exercises out there. First, because it is amazing. And second, because you burn 623 to 735 calories in an hour.

That’s a lot of calories; way more than you burn while lifting weights. You can burn more calories if you catch large waves—up to 900 calories in an hour.

Think about that the next time you have to choose between going to the gym and SUP surfing. Easy to decide, right?

c. Calories Burned SUP Touring


Touring on your paddle board may not be considered intense. But it is quite efficient in burning calories. Although you paddle moderately, you cover a long distance. Most paddlers don’t stop because they are trying to get somewhere.

In an hour, you can expect to use anywhere from 615 to 708 calories. This is enough motivation to hit the water on a lazy afternoon. And it won’t be about calories only. SUP touring is a good way to catch up with friends and clear your mind after a stressful day.

d. SUP Yoga


The benefits of yoga are well known.

When you observe someone doing SUP yoga, you may think to yourself, “that looks easy.” Until you try it. But even after you do, it may not feel intense.

So, you might be surprised to learn that doing yoga on a stand up paddle board burns 416 to 540 calories. It is more challenging than doing it on the floor.

If the water is not very calm and you are attempting hard poses, you will get a good workout.

ALSO READ: What are the best SUP excercises for training core strength?

e. Recreational SUP


Recreational paddling is the most popular type of SUP. It is done leisurely in calm conditions.

As you can guess, you don’t burn many calories—compared to the other activities above. Expect to use 305 to 430 calories.

However, that is still a good number. Walking at the same pace only burns about half of that.

What Makes SUP a Good Exercise for Burning Calories?

This calculator helps you compare the number of calories burned paddle boarding with other activities. You will find several exercises that use as many calories as SUP racing—or get close. Running, for instance, is highly recommended.

But most of those activities, in all honesty, are brutal. SUP touring is something that you can do for hours and you will still be reluctant to call it a day. Running at high speed, on the other hand, is hard.

The good thing about paddle boarding is that you barely feel tired. There are views to enjoy, friends to laugh with and new SUP yoga poses to try.

It is easier for you to paddle board for three hours than it is to dance vigorously or perform intense weight training for the same amount of time.

How to Burn More Calories


Three factors influence the number of calories that a participant will burn. They include body size, intensity, pace and, of course, time. The more, the faster and the harder you do something, the more calories your body will use.

But here is something else that many people don’t know: how you SUP determines the number of calories you burn.

Suppose a pro and beginner paddle side by side. The experienced paddler will most likely burn more calories. (All other factors held constant).

Why is that?

It is because the pro has a proper paddle boarding technique. This means that their stroke is powerful and they engage almost all their muscles.

If you want to take up paddling for weight loss, you have to work on your technique. Not only will it help with your goals, but it may prevent you from getting hurt.

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: Discover the 19 best places to paddleboard in Florida for your next holiday.



Standup paddle boarding is one of the best exercises for burning calories. As they say, “Numbers don’t lie.”

The above figures were achieved by measuring the calories burned by paddlers doing the specific paddle board activities for an hour.

If you want to use up many calories in a short amount of time, try paddle board racing. Just make sure that you don’t push yourself too hard.

For those that prefer a relaxed activity, SUP yoga or recreational SUP would be perfect. It all depends on what your goals are.

More importantly, remember to have fun and take awesome photos.

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1 thought on “How Many Calories Do You Burn with Stand Up Paddle Boarding?”

  1. What’s the best heart monitor / device combo for sup? I have a garmin bluetooth / ant HM for cycling, can i use that with something?