Myth: rollerbladers are wimps. Fact: rollerbladers are superhuman beings with quads of steel! Okay, so maybe we aren’t that good, but rollerblading is a seriously underrated form of cardio in the fitness world! I’ve considered myself a hardcore rollerblader for years now. I love it. Nothing makes me happier than blissfully gliding through the world on eight wheels. While I do this mostly for pleasure, I have noticed that my quads have become quite strong in comparison to the rest of my body. Let’s look at some of the other benefits:
Roller skating uses mainly lower body muscles, and provides many of the same cardiovascular benefits as running or bicycling with less impact on your muscles, bones and joints. According to Harvard Health Publications, skating for 30 minutes burns between 210 and 311 calories, depending on your weight.
Case in point: rollerblading can burn between 400-600 calories an hour, and it is just as good for your health as running! Not only that, but it has hardly any impact on your knees (this is a welcome relief to somebody like me who is always getting knee injuries from running).
What else does rollerblading do?
- works your hamstrings, quads, calves, hips, and glutes
- swinging your arms while you skate for balance tones your shoulders and arm muscles
- you use your core to keep balanced while you skate, toning your abs, obliques, and lower back
- oh, and it’s much more fun than running like a rat on a treadmill!
The most effective way to burn calories and reap the health benefits of blading is to focus on interval training, however even a leisurely blade with friends is a far better choice than just sitting on the couch. To try some interval training, start slowly and work up to “roller sprints”, or find a hilly area and work up and down the hills. I’m a little hard core, but sometimes I’ll go for a three hour blade…it’s a great way to enjoy a beautiful sunny day. There are also some really cool “stunt bladers” out there…the possibilities are endless. Hope this helped to justify your not-so-guilty pleasure.