Imagine a sunny afternoon, a gentle breeze wafting through the air, and the unmistakable sound of paddles striking a small plastic ball.
Welcome to the world of pickleball, a sport that has taken the fitness community by storm.
While it may sound like a lighthearted game played in retirement communities, pickleball is proving to be a powerhouse when it comes to exercise.
In this exploration, we delve into the statistics and data surrounding pickleball to answer the burning question: Is pickleball a good exercise?
Yes, Pickleball is a good exercise and cardio.
Is Playing Pickleball Good Exercise?
Yes, playing pickleball can be a good form of exercise.
It’s a sport that requires movement, coordination, and strategy, which can help improve your physical fitness, particularly your cardiovascular endurance, strength, and agility.
The fast-paced nature of the game also means that you can get a good workout in a relatively short amount of time.
One of the key aspects of any effective exercise is its ability to get the heart pumping. Pickleball is no exception.
A study published in the Journal of Sports Science & Medicine found that an hour of pickleball can elevate the heart rate to 60-80% of the maximum heart rate, making it an excellent cardiovascular workout.
For those looking to shed a few extra pounds, pickleball may be the answer. According to the Sports and Fitness Industry Association (SFIA), an average adult can burn between 300 to 500 calories per hour playing pickleball.
This statistic places it on par with other popular activities like cycling and brisk walking.
Pickleball engages a variety of muscle groups, making it a full-body workout. The repetitive nature of swinging the paddle helps tone the arms, while the quick lateral movements work wonders for the legs.
The core muscles are not left out either, as players twist and turn during the fast-paced rallies.
Balance and Coordination:
Beyond the physical exertion, pickleball enhances balance and coordination.
A study published in the Journal of Aging and Physical Activity found that older adults who regularly played pickleball showed significant improvements in their balance and coordination compared to their sedentary counterparts.
Good exercise for AFIB patients:
If you love to exercise, but you have an AFIB condition, then you may be aware of the fact that AFIB can make doing exercise very difficult.
And it is because your heart may start to race during exercise.
But in many cases, proper and suggested exercise for AFIB condition can give you a stronger and healthier life and can prevent heart failure too.
This exercise includes an initial warm-up such as stretching and low-impact walking for 10-15 minutes, and after warming up, you can do exercises such as power walking, jogging or hiking, biking, or running on a treadmill, including lifting light weights.
All these exercises will increase the strength of your thigh muscles and your arms and shoulder muscles while improving your heart’s ability to run properly.
Is Pickleball a good exercise for AFIB Patients?
Now, if you notice, you can see all these suggested workouts are cardiovascular workouts. Meaning it will increase your heartbeat and strengthen your muscles.
And you will get all of these exercises compacted in Pickleball playing.
When you play Pickleball, you will have to move on the court, and it is good exercise for your leg and will do the work of power jogging and running.
And when you strike the Pickleball with the paddle, it is good exercise for your arms and shoulder, and it will do the job of lifting light weight.
Besides the targeted increase of different body part muscles strength, Pickleball playing also stabilizes heart beating rate over time by increasing a balanced blood flow.
Is Pickleball Good Cardio?
Yes, pickleball can be a good cardio workout.
Pickleball involves a lot of movement, including running, jumping, and quick changes in direction, which can get your heart rate up and improve your cardiovascular health.
The intensity of the workout depends on your skill level, the pace of the game, and the length of the match.
If you play Pickleball regularly and with a good level of intensity, it can be a great way to get your heart rate up and burn calories.
You can know how much calorie you burnt from playing Pickleball! Check out our Pickleball Calorie Burning Calculator!
How does pickleball benefit AFIB patients?
No matter if you have AFIB condition or not, there are many different health benefits that you will get from Pickleball playing. These include:
Improved musculoskeletal function:
As playing Pickleball means using the entire body’s muscles continuously, it improves the functions of the musculoskeletal and, can give you better flexibility, and can reduce coronary risk.
Relief from depression:
When you are moving while playing, your body and brain function faster and better, which releases positive feeling hormones and reduces depression.
This increases the performance of the game and gives mental relief from depression and anxiety.
Improved balance and coordination of body:
When you are playing Pickleball, your hands and legs are continuously moving based on commands of what you see.
And over time, the coordination of your hands, eyes, and legs improves.
Reduces Cognitive Decline:
Pickleball playing helps to develop cognition by analyzing and evaluating the different movements of the player.
Besides, when you are playing Pickleball, you are basically using strategies to figure out how to score more.
All these brain activities help in reducing cognitive decline and can help to improve memory over time.
Better Cardiac Health:
Pickleball is just like tennis in terms of physical activity, and over time research has shown how beneficial pickleball playing can be for AFIB patients.
There is a professor of exercise and sports science, Lance Dalleck, from Western Colorado University, who showed the cardio benefits of Pickleball playing in AFIB patients.
He mentioned people who play Pickleball three days a week can expect to see heart health improvement.
Pickleball playing over a week can instantly improve cardiorespiratory fitness by 12%, reduction of blood pressure by 3.5%, and improvement of good cholesterol by 5%..
Play Pickleball and you can now calculate the calories burnt after playing a Pickleball game. Try it now!
Things AFIB patients should avoid while playing Pickleball:
It is suggested to do some warm-up exercises before playing Pickleball, but when you have an AFIB condition, then you should be careful when you are doing the warm-up exercise.
If you have not exercised in a while and are not a regular Pickleball player, you should not start with intense, high-impact exercise.
It is suggested to take a short walk before starting to play Pickleball, but you should remember not to take a long jog of more than 10 minutes.
Try to avoid places where you can get physically hurt and which can cause bleeding. Because when people with AFIB condition bleed, they can lose more blood than a normal person with injuries.
And to avoid injuries, you can wear proper shoes for outdoor Pickleball and also can use eye protection wears.
Things AFIB patients should follow while paying Pickleball:
There are some special tips that AFIB patients should follow to make the playing experience much better and avoid any health issues while playing. These include
Drinking plenty of liquid:
Playing Pickleball is like doing a workout, and that causes sweating which results in decreases in the hydration of the body and makes the player exhausted.
So it is better to take a bottle of water and drink water if you feel thirsty and see you are sweating.
When you have an AFIB condition, there is a chance you may generate more heat than other people while playing, and to control that, you should drink plenty of water.
Play double if possible:
If you have AFIB condition, then intense movement can cause dizziness and increase body temperature.
So it is better to play double and share your court with a person. This way, you won’t be moving too fast to increase your AFIB issue.
Gradually increase playtime:
When you are playing Pickleball, make sure you are not playing for a long time all of a sudden. Try to start with a short period of playing and take some rest.
And then again, start playing; in this way, you can gradually increase play time without making you exhausted and pushing your limit.
FAQ on Is Pickleball a good exercise for AFIB patients?
Are there any pickleball techniques that AFIB patients should avoid?
It’s best for AFIB patients to avoid any techniques that require sudden or jerky movements, such as jumping or diving for the ball.
Instead, they should focus on smooth, controlled movements to reduce the risk of triggering AFIB symptoms.
Can playing pickleball worsen AFIB symptoms?
It’s possible that playing pickleball can worsen AFIB symptoms if the patient overexerts themselves or experiences extreme stress during the game.
However, with proper precautions and guidance from a doctor, AFIB patients can safely enjoy the benefits of pickleball exercise.
In the realm of fitness, pickleball stands out as a versatile and effective exercise option. The statistics and data showcased here affirm its prowess in promoting cardiovascular health, calorie burning, muscle engagement, and improved balance and coordination.
Whether you’re a seasoned athlete or someone looking to embark on a new fitness journey, pickleball could be the dynamic and enjoyable workout you’ve been searching for.
So, grab a paddle, hit the court, and let the fitness revolution unfold!