Volleyball as Good Aerobic Exercise

Volleyball is one of those sports that’s easy to enjoy but did you know that it’s a very good aerobic exercise? Burning calories, doing a long-forgotten cardio, and staying in shape while keeping an eye on the ball isn’t something that’s too good to be true.

In this post, we’ll show you why volleyball is considered to be a good aerobic exercise, the benefits you might be experiencing playing it, and even give you an idea of why you should add volleyball to your training routine, so let’s break it down!

Why is Volleyball Considered a Good Aerobic Exercise?

Volleyball is a sport that involves a lot of movement, and while the playing ground isn’t too big, it’s a sport that’s packed with action, speed, and adrenaline. Having to keep the eyes on the ball at all times, work with your teammates, take turns around the pitch in various positions, and always stay alert involves a lot of muscle use.

Shooting, blocking, running, and jumping are just some things you do on the volleyball pitch. The great thing about volleyball is that it’s very fun to play so you don’t even notice all the hard work you’re putting in.

With that being said, as a volleyball player, you keep a higher heart rate throughout the match, even if you’re not aware of it. Working with various muscle groups, your body needs more oxygen than usual, and that’s exactly where the glucose-to-energy conversion happens. This is the core part of cardio so yes, volleyball can be considered a very good aerobic exercise.

We’ve mentioned earlier that it is a good idea to enjoy volleyball as aerobic, even if you have to add it to your exercise routine. So if you’re trying to burn some calories while having fun and not depending on cardio machines, volleyball is the way to do so!

How Many Calories Do You Burn Playing Volleyball?

One of the things we mentioned earlier most likely got your attention the most. It’s that volleyball as aerobic burns calories while you’re playing. But how many calories do you burn playing volleyball?

Every player will burn a different amount of calories and this all depends on the intensity of the game, muscle use by the player, and the time you’ve played the volleyball. An average volleyball player can burn anywhere between 120 to 180 calories when competitively playing volleyball for 30 minutes.

If you’re not very competitive and you just want to add volleyball to your exercise routine to burn some calories, you can still expect to burn about 90 to 130 calories when casually playing volleyball for 30 minutes. That’s still a great result, but there’s one more thing to keep in mind. Your body weight will also determine how many calories you burn while playing volleyball.

People who weigh more will burn more calories while playing volleyball. While this is something you should keep in mind, it’s also good to know that that’s the way calorie burning works for any other sport or exercise.

Calories You Burn by Playing Volleyball

Is Volleyball Considered a Cardio Workout?

When you think of cardio, do you think of running, cycling, and cardio machines? Well, while these forms of cardio are the most known ones, volleyball as aerobic can be considered a cardio workout.

Volleyball is sometimes even considered as a great HIIT training. HIIT stands for high-intensity interval training, which is exactly what you do when playing volleyball, even without knowing it. Short bursts of energy and the use of specific muscles in volleyball have many benefits and cardiovascular and respiratory health are just some of the most important ones.

As we’ve mentioned before, keeping an elevated heart rate during the match is another characteristic of cardio, so you are doing cardio when playing volleyball. While there’s not much resistance involved which makes volleyball unsuitable for muscle growth, it’s a great way to lose some weight without having to rely on cardio machines that can bore you out of the gym.

This is one of the reasons why we believe adding volleyball to your exercise schedule once or twice a week is a great idea. While it’s a game that requires many players, joining local volleyball clubs is one of the best ways to get started.


Volleyball as aerobic has proven to be a very effective way to burn calories and improve cardiovascular and respiratory health. If sticking to the gym and cardio machines available in the average gym bores you, playing sports like volleyball will benefit you with the same cardio results.

One of the most overlooked things is that sports can replace cardio. The only thing you need is to reach an elevated heart rate and use a certain set of muscles over a certain period. That describes almost any active sport out there, so yes, we highly recommend picking up volleyball if you’re trying to burn some calories and lose weight.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Is volleyball an anaerobic or aerobic sport?

Volleyball often integrates both anaerobic and aerobic components into the sport so as long as you play long-duration matches, you’ll experience benefits of both.

Is volleyball a vigorous aerobic activity?

While volleyball might not seem like a vigorous activity, it is considered to be a vigorous aerobic activity. As long as you play it a couple of times a week for at least 30 minutes at a time. Getting into competitive volleyball increases the benefits.

What sport is mostly aerobic activity and why?

Most sports that depend on endurance are solely aerobic activity and great examples are running or cycling. These are the sports where the body uses oxygen to provide energy for better endurance.

Does playing volleyball count as exercise?

Yes, playing volleyball counts as exercise because the game elevates the heart rate, requires the use of certain muscle groups, and keeps the player active on the field throughout the match. Competitive volleyball matches can be a highly effective cardio exercise.

Is volleyball good for losing weight?

Yes, volleyball is good for losing weight. It needs to be played over a longer period to experience the gain-loss results.

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