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Does Motorcycle Riding Burn Calories?

Does Motorcycle Riding Burn Calories?

Riding a motorcycle can be beneficial both physically and mentally. Motorcycle riding can help burn a lot of calories as braking, maintaining balance, and controlling the clutch require working several muscle groups.

Studies have shown that riding a motorcycle for at least an hour can burn 150 to 600 calories, depending on how intensely you ride and the level of muscle movement.

This article discusses the relationship between motorcycle riding and burning calories, how many calories you burn while riding, and why motorcycle riding results in calories being burned.

1. Is Motorcycling an Exercise?

Riding a motorcycle is considered an exercise but it is not a focused workout. When you ride, you'll engage in several muscle groups, especially if you are racing at high speed.

Although motorcycle riding does not always target specific muscle groups like when you work out at a gym, it still can be classified as a form of exercise. However, motorcycle riding cannot be a substitute workout routine since it doesn't train every muscle group equally.

However, riding a motorcycle is a reliable way to improve stamina, strengthen your muscles in the core, arms, and legs, and increase your heart rate and lung capacity.

2. What Causes Calories to Burn While Riding a Motorcycle?

2.1 Exercising Muscles

When riding, several muscle groups are actively used. The muscles in your hands that move the handlebars, the muscles in your legs and upper body that keep you stable, or the muscles in your neck when you swivel your head to scan your surroundings. Due to your muscles constantly being worked, it caused you to burn a lot of calories at a steady rate.

2.2 Muscle Strength

Riding a motorbike requires you to utilize your muscles to support your body weight, motorcycle, and cargo whenever you are seated, controlling, or turning. You may need to engage all of your muscles to maintain control, thus burning extra calories and strengthening the muscles in your neck, abdomen, legs, hands, etc.

2.3 Elevated Heart Rate

When riding a motorbike, many riders experience an increase in heart rate. Due to the increase in blood flow and adrenaline, the body is able to burn more calories as a result. A possible side effect is an increase in adrenaline, which will help you stay more concentrated. The two taken together form a gentle workout.

2.4 Riding Style

Depending on your riding style, this may also affect how many calories you burn. For example, riding a motorbike on a dirt track may burn up to 600 calories per hour due to frequently having to make quick turns and maintain control when traveling over bumps. Although most people won't have to exert as much effort when riding on a short commute or long-distance trip, they may still need to turn the handlebars or hold up the motorcycle when at stop signs or turning on the ignition. You burn a lot of calories just by getting on and off your motorcycle.

3. How Many Calories Do You Burn While Motorcycling?

The number of calories burned per hour when riding a motorcycle is often a subject of debate. When navigating twisty roads with an average air temperature, the average is about 180 calories burned per hour. You will likely burn more calories when off-roading or dual-sport riding.

If you ride your motorbike for at least seven hours per day, you'll burn at least 1,260 calories. If you relax and sleep after immediately getting off your motorcycle, you burn an additional 1,190 calories (17 hours @ 70 calories). In total, you burn at least 2,450 calories.

Many motorcyclists often ride their motorbikes for at least seven hours, only stopping occasionally to explore and eat. It's difficult to estimate exactly how many calories you burn every hour since it depends on how often and intensely you engaged your muscle groups.

4. How Can You Burn More Calories While Riding a Motorcycling?

How Can You Burn More Calories While Riding a Motorcycling?

4.1 Ride a Heavyweight Motorcycle

Riding a heavy motorcycle can be uncomfortable on longer rides but will help you burn more calories quicker. This is because riding a larger motorbike requires exerting muscles more often and requires constantly shifting to maintain balance.

4.2 Travel on Challenging Roads

If you want to ride a motorbike with the intention of burning as many calories as you can, the greatest thing you can do that will make you burn plenty of calories is to ride on challenging terrain and roads, such as forests, beaches, or dirt. This requires extra exertion when navigating, turning, braking, and maneuvering on off-road trails.

4.3 Get Heavy Protective Gear

If you do not own a heavy motorbike, purchasing heavy riding gear, such as thick gloves or padded armor, will increase the weight you are carrying while on the road. Additionally, you may load up a luggage bag with heavy items.

4.4 Ride More Attentively

A lot of people may be shocked to learn that being more attentive while riding will make it easier to burn more calories. In reality, motorcycling can help you burn almost 20% of all your body’s calories.

4.5 Be More Active

If you believe that simply riding for fun will result in you burning off a lot of calories without using your legs or hands, you are wrong. The main factor that results in you burning off the majority of your calories while riding is when you keep moving your body. Try to be active while seated by always moving and stretching your arms, hands, and legs. You can even try doing isometric workouts, which involve contracting and releasing your stomach. This will increase your chances of building stronger muscles and boosting your calorie expenditure.

4.6 Racing

Racing on a motorbike requires you to constantly shift your body and exert several muscle groups, resulting in an average burning of 600 calories.

4.7 Go for Longer Rides

Traveling for more hours or across longer distances gives you more time to work your muscles. It is best to go on a long ride with a friend over the weekend.

5. Which Muscles Are Exerted Often and Help Burn More Calories While Riding?

5.1 Neck Muscles

One of the muscles that riders use the most while riding is the neck muscle. Motorcyclists continuously rotate their necks when checking their surroundings, improving their back muscles and neck vertebrae as well.

5.2 Knee and Feet Muscles

Your knee and feet muscles are constantly in motion while riding a motorcycle. Constantly stretching, bending, and exerting your legs and feet will strengthen the muscles while burning a lot of calories.

5.3 Abdominal Muscles

Exerting your abdominal muscles will help you maintain balance, strengthen your abdominal muscles, and burn a lot of calories.

6. Does Motorcycling Build Muscles?

Yes, riding a motorcycle helps build and strengthen your muscles. The arm, core, and wrist muscles bear the most stress while riding a motorcycle, though several muscle groups are also actively involved.

For core muscles, they are exerted most when you are turning or cornering.

For neck and back muscles, enduring the wind blowing in your face at high speed and the weight of the helmet will gradually improve their strength.

For thigh and knee muscles, r resting your feet flat on the ground and standing up when the motorcycle is stopped requires them to be strong enough to support your motorcycle’s weight.

Your hand and arm muscles are strengthened due to gripping the handlebars and applying the clutch, braking, steering, and other controls.

7. Can Electric Motorcycles Help You Burn Calories?

Yes, riding electric motorcycles can help you burn a lot of calories. Most people think riding an electric motorcycle requires no effort but this is not true at all.

Riding an electric motorcycle requires intense concentration and exerting several muscle groups to maintain control over the motorcycle. However, because it does not require as much effort as a regular motorcycle, this results in fewer calories being burned.

8. Last Words

Motorcycling can be a great workout for your muscles and help you burn calories. The number of calories you burn in a ride depends on the intensity of riding. Additionally, riding a motorcycle also helps build up your core, back, neck, thigh, knee, and arm muscles.

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