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How Many Calories Do I Burn Playing Soccer?

How Many Calories Do I Burn Playing Soccer?

Calories can simply be defined in nutrition as energy gotten from food and drink. An average American needs about 8,400kJ – 10,500kJ (2,000kcal – 2,500kcal) per day to sustain healthy body weight.

Not checking your calorie intake may result in a situation where low-fat and fat-free foods store in your body as fat, causing weight gain. Most people can’t differentiate fat from calories.

A calorie is a measurement for a unit of energy obtained from digesting and absorbing food. On all food packaging, the number of calories contained is enumerated on the label.

Most health coaches always emphasize the need for people to cut down on their calorie intake. The more calories contained in a food, the more energy it yields.

When an individual consumes more calories than needed, the body stores the excess as body fat. This is why it is very important to always watch your calorie intake.

The body needs energy for organs to function effectively and for life to be sustained. Calories burnt by the body during physical activities vary due to different factors such as age and body weight.

Soccer is a popular sporting event watched by people from all over the world. It is not just an entertaining event, it is also a great form of exercise to help people keep fit and live healthily.

Perhaps, you have been struggling with weight and wondering if you can lose that excess fat by playing soccer. Today, we are going to tell you the number of calories that you will burn playing soccer.

How many calories do I burn playing soccer?

Soccer players are expected to run around the soccer field for 90 minutes and sometimes even more than that—if the game extends into extra time. What is most impressive about soccer players is their dexterity and resilience.

Sometimes health-minded soccer fans might be wondering how many calories their favorite players burn per game. This information may not be available but players who cover more distance during a match, burn more calories.

According to Harvard Health Publication, during 30 minutes of playing soccer, players weighing 155 to 185 pounds burn between 260 to 311 calories.

Soccer player on training course

Position played and time duration are taken into consideration when calculating the calories burned by a player. Some players get substituted in the early minutes of the game.

Burning calories while playing soccer is a sure guarantee but the number of calories an individual burns depends on certain factors which may differ for individuals.

The goalkeeper burns fewer calories because of the nature of their role. Midfielders burn calories at a higher rate because they do a lot of running around the confines of the soccer field.

Factors like an individual’s weight, level of fitness, the intensity of play, and type of diet all affect the number of calories burned while playing soccer.

Studies reveal that the more you weigh, the more calories you will burn under the same circumstances. While playing soccer, a 130-pound person will burn an average of 5.9 calories per minute.

A 155-pound individual will burn an average of 9.3 calories per minute of soccer. Going higher, a 190-pound person will probably burn an average of 11.5 calories per minute during a soccer game.

To figure out how many calories you burn while playing soccer, you can make use of a wide range of automated online calorie counters. They can be downloaded for free or used online.

You can also calculate your calorie burn manually by multiplying your general body mass by the Metabolic Equivalent of Task (MET) and duration of soccer activity.

MET is a measurement used to calculate the ratio of energy expended by an individual on a specific physical activity concerning the time and weight of the individual. The MET value of soccer is 7.

As a professional soccer player, knowing the number of calories you burn during training and matches will help you in adjusting your caloric needs.

Other sports that burn calories in equal range to soccer include racquetball, baseball, tennis, and American football.

Although association football is more common than other forms of soccer, we would like to take a look at other soccer variants and how many calories they burn.

1. Futsal

futsal is also a sport that can burn many calories

There are real health benefits in playing futsal either professionally or with friends. Futsal is a highly intermittent sport with numerous actions such as tackling, kicking, jumping, turning, sprinting and heading.

These activities may be low-intensive but they help in maintaining general body fitness. Futsal is a whole-body workout routine without needing guidance from a professional fitness trainer.

In an hour’s play of futsal, an average 190lb male is expected to burn approximately 800 calories similar to cycling, basketball, swimming, and rugby.

2. Beach Soccer

active in the beach with the sand will help players burn lots of calories

The smell of coconut, body lotion and saltwater aren’t the only things that make the beach exciting. There are many ways to burn loads of calories at the beach.

Beach sports like waist-deep water walking, snorkeling, kayaking, windsurfing, boogie-boarding, swimming, and beach soccer offer great ways to exercise and have fun.

Next time you go to the beach, you can play beach soccer if you can’t surf or swim. Beach soccer helps flex the hips, legs, and upper body while challenging the player’s speed, strength, and agility.

A 150-pound individual burns approximately 500 calories per hour of actively playing beach soccer.

3. Indoor Soccer

Indoor soccer is most common in the United States and Canada and was developed as a way of staying fit during the winter season.

indoor soccer players need very calories in a match

The three major physical requirements of indoor soccer are endurance, agility, and speed. A player must be able to maintain a high rate of activity for a long period of play.

In Indoor soccer, players cover about 7 miles per game which can differ depending on the player’s position.

In a casual indoor soccer game, a 150lbs player burns about 501 calories per hour while in a competitive indoor soccer game, a 150lbs player burns 716 calories on average per hour.

How many calories does a soccer player burn per game?

Playing soccer requires a lot of energy either when playing competitively or for leisure. Thus, soccer is an ideal way of staying in shape and maintaining peak body fitness.

Long-distance running during a game of soccer has many health benefits like increased endurance and muscle strength.

Soccer games are meant to last for 90 minutes but might go up to 120 minutes sometimes. We can’t fix a general figure for the number of calories burned by soccer players per game.

During a soccer game, not all players play for the entire 90 minutes. Substitutions are made at intervals depending on the choice of the coach.

Calories burned during a soccer match by players can be very impressive. A player weighing 130 pounds can burn close to 800 calories per game.

A 150-pound player can burn about 1,000 calories per game and a 180-pound player is likely to burn 1,140 calories in a game.

How many calories do two hours of soccer burn?

The average number of calories expended by a soccer player during a competitive game differs by player’s weight.

Below is an approximation of calories a soccer player will burn within two hours of play:

  • A 140lb (63.6kg) player will burn 1,272 in two hours
  • A 150lb (68.2kg) player will burn 1,364 in two hours
  • A 160lb (72.7kg) player will burn 1,454 in two hours
  • A 170lb (77.3kg) player will burn 1,546 in two hours
  • A 180lb (81.8kg) player will burn 1,636 in two hours
  • A 190lb (86.4kg) player will burn 1,728 in two hours
  •  A 200lb (90.1kg) player will burn 1,802 in two hours

The only way to accurately determine the number of calories burned by a soccer player is by using a gadget that can measure the amount of oxygen they consume per second which isn’t feasible.

Soccer players playin in the game

Is soccer a good way to burn calories?

Those who weigh a little more than they want to weigh can also engage in soccer while avoiding over-processed food.

A 155-pound individual can lose 260 calories in a 30 minutes soccer game. This means that losing 2 pounds of fat in a month only requires an hour of soccer three times per week.

A soccer league that primarily focuses on burning calories is becoming popular in the UK. It is called Man vs Fat Football League targeting fat men over the age of 30 with rewards attached to weight loss.

Playing soccer might not be as easy as it looks, especially if the game doesn’t excite you.

According to studies done by 50 researchers in seven countries, soccer can reduce blood pressure, cut the risk of heart disease, reduce weight gain, decrease cholesterol and burn calories.

Does playing soccer burn fat? 

Does playing soccer burn fat .jpg

Every aerobic activity has the potential of burning fat. Soccer is a kind of sport that affects every part of the body which makes it a perfect hobby for those seeking to burn fat.

By playing soccer, you develop muscle mass and burn fat because both fast-twitch and slow-twitch muscle fibers are affected.

Playing soccer as a cardio workout burns more calories than working out at the gym because soccer pushes you to switch between anaerobic and aerobic pathways.

Unlike other physical activities, soccer develops your metabolism and preserves muscle mass. Researchers at the University of Copenhagen found out that playing soccer regularly lowers body fat.

What burns more calories running or soccer?

This topic is quite subjective. According to most people, playing soccer for 90 mins is less tiring than running a 10,000 meters route. It all depends on personality, passion, and motivation.

It is a known fact that long-distance running and physical endurance soccer are two of the most demanding sports in existence. They both require physical fitness and stamina to effectively compete.

In terms of calories burned, soccer and running don’t have much difference although soccer has a fixed time while running doesn’t.

From studies, we learned that a 125-pound individual running at 5 miles per hour for 15 minutes will burn 113.5 calories.

Multiplying 15 minutes by 6 will give you 90 minutes which is the length of a soccer match equating to 681 calories burnt.

In soccer, it is believed that an average of 260 – 311 calories is burnt every 30 minutes of play. Therefore in 90 minutes, we will be recording between 780 – 933 burnt calories.

In the long run, soccer is more physically engaging while running requires more endurance.


It is wrong to link calories to only weight gain and obesity when they are also needed for good health. Calories only become a threat when consumed in excess.

When thinking of a sport to help you contain your calorie levels and stay healthy, think of soccer. Eating the recommended calories and playing soccer can help you in ways you can’t possibly imagine.