How Long Should I Dance to Burn 500 Calories?

Dancer Portrait
Two people are salsa dancing. (Image: blanaru/iStock/Getty Images)

You may not ever qualify as a contest on "So You Think You Can Dance", but if you let your inner dancing diva out to play, you can burn some serious calories. Dance is an excellent form of aerobic conditioning and enjoyable enough for some people that they don't consider it exercise. The number of calories burned depends on your weight, the length of time you dance and how intense the workout is.

Benefits of Dance

Dancing can provide cardiovascular conditioning, which can help lower your risk of coronary heart disease, lower blood pressure and help you manage your weight, according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. It is also weight-bearing, which improves bone density, muscle strength, coordination and balance. In addition, a number of people have experienced psychological benefits from dance. It reduces stress and fatigue and improves energy and mood, and can increase your self-confidence.

Calories Burned

A person weighing 155 pounds would need to do fast ballroom dancing for approximately one hour and 25 minutes to burn just over 500 calories, according to Harvard Health. If that person were doing slow ballroom dancing, they should dance for about two hours and 25 minutes to burn 500 calories. A 155-pound person would need to do aerobic or fast-paced dancing for approximately one hour and 10 minutes to burn approximately 500 calories.

Zumba

Zumba was created accidentally by fitness instructor Alberto Perez when he forgot to take his traditional aerobics music to a class one day. He improvised with his own mix of music tapes in his backpack, which included the salsa and merengue music he grew up with. The Latin-inspired dance program lets the music move you with its energizing but easy-to-follow steps. A 150 pound individual will burn 540 calories an hour with Zumba.

Cautions

If you are just taking up dancing, start with a beginner class to minimize the risk of injury, and concentrate on improving your flexibility and balance before advancing to high-impact movements. Since there are so many different styles of dancing and dance-fitness classes available, it should be easy to find something that aligns with your goals, preferences and fitness level.

REFERENCES & RESOURCES
Comments
PARTNER & LICENSEE OF THE LIVESTRONG FOUNDATION

Copyright © 2018 Leaf Group Ltd. Use of this web site constitutes acceptance of the LIVESTRONG.COM Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Copyright Policy. The material appearing on LIVESTRONG.COM is for educational use only. It should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. LIVESTRONG is a registered trademark of the LIVESTRONG Foundation. The LIVESTRONG Foundation and LIVESTRONG.COM do not endorse any of the products or services that are advertised on the web site. Moreover, we do not select every advertiser or advertisement that appears on the web site-many of the advertisements are served by third party advertising companies.