Two go-karters in blue electric karts

How many calories can you burn while go-karting?

29 November 2023

Many people would be surprised by how many calories you can burn go-karting as they may not realise that it's a pretty intensive source of exercise.

Go-karting is a fun weekend activity for a lot of people, but it’s also a competitive sport. 

We’ve been asked before whether go-karting is a good activity for burning calories, and the short answer is yes! 

In short, yes. Go-karting is a fun weekend activity for a lot of people, but it's also a competitive sport. Go karting increases your heart rate and requires full body engagement which makes it a brilliant endurance activity which will have your whole body working.

You might have observed that go-karting can be quite tiring. This is because go-karts can go up to 40mph, and you have to engage a lot of muscles to properly control a kart at that speed, as well as to withstand the g-forces involved. This, coupled with other health benefits, means that go-karting is really good exercise.

How Many Calories Does Go-Karting Burn?

Back in 2017, we conducted a study at TeamSport Leeds to uncover how many calories are burned during go-karting (which has since been used as a benchmark measurement). 

We found that, for 30 minutes of go-karting, about 358 calories are burned. This is more than you would lose for 30 minutes of jogging, trampolining, rowing or cycling!  

This means that an adult taking part in our main race - the Ultimate Race Experience - could find that the two 15-minute spurts of racing are a sufficient workout for the whole day. Now imagine participating in an endurance race like our 50 Lap Race and what great benefits you would get for doing this kind of high-intensity exercise often!

Go-Karting Health Benefits

The more you weigh, the more calories you burn, so go-karting can be a great element to a weight-loss strategy. We recognise, however, that not everyone is motivated by weight loss, and go-karting offers many other health benefits as a source of high-intensity exercise.

If you want to improve your heart health, go-karting can be great! Adrenaline floods your system as you race around the tracks, which elevates your heartrate. Regularly elevating your heartrate is the best way to strengthen it - of course, we don’t recommend go-karting if your heart is particularly weak, or if you have a history of heart disease. 

You can also use go-karting to enhance your reflexes and co-ordination. No matter your ability, go-karting is a fun day out, but you become great at it by sharpening your senses and understanding how small choices can give you an edge in races. As a result, you become physically and mentally faster, improving your strategic thinking too!

If your goal is to build muscle, then you’re in the right place. Go-karting helps to you strengthen your muscles by working your biceps, triceps, neck, calves, lats, shoulders and core - it’s essentially a full-body workout!

Don’t Focus Too Much on Calories

While go-karting can help you burn calories, we advise you to remember that go-karting should not be your sole source of exercise, especially if your primary goal is to lose weight! 

A lot of the weight you lose with go-karting, after all, is water weight - it’s very easy to become dehydrated in a hot go-karting suit, so once you rehydrate, you may feel disappointed, feeling as though you’ve made very little progress. We recommend you use go-karting to build muscle and have some adrenaline-fueled fun - this will help you keep a healthy relationship with the sport!

Activities to Pair with Go-Karting

Want a more varied day out? After a high-intensity workout like go-karting, it can be nice to cool down with something less strenuous. We have a range of additional activities and racing events available across our 40+ TeamSport locations.

Whether you fancy following up with a round of crazy golf or some bowling, we’ve got something for you. Search up your local TeamSport for more information!