how many calories do jumping jacks burn

How many calories do jumping jacks burn? Complete Guide

Most of us remember jumping jacks from when we were kids. This fun-filled and equipment-free exercise lets you jump your way into a tone, fit body.

Jumping jacks involve your entire body and are good at raising your heart rate. They enhance your endurance and improve musculoskeletal strength. Additionally, this is an excellent way to effectively improve your flexibility.

How many calories does jumping jacks burn? The number of calories burned change from person to another.  According to Webmd, a 220 lbs person will burn about 29 calories doing moderate jumping jacks for 5 minutes and  67 calories doing vigorous jumping jacks for 5 minutes.  

How many calories do jumping jacks burn? Comprehensive guide

Calculating calories burned doing jumping jacks

Fitness experts use the Metabolic Equivalent of Task values (MET) to accurately calculate the number of calories burned, jumping jacks, and any other exercise. To begin with, the energy used while seated passively is what makes 1 MET. In a dormant state, you burn 1 calorie per hour.  

 Calories burned doing jumping jacks can range from 8 to 15 METs because it is a high intensity workout. The exact MET value will depend on the intensity of the workout, among other factors. This is why you will come across an array of MET tables having slight variations in figures. 

Calories Burned by jumping jacks per minute

how many calories do jumping jacks burn

MET value x 3.5 x Bodyweight(kgs) and then divide the answer by 200. The resulting figure will be the number of calories you will burn doing jumping jacks. The easiest way to do this calculation is by using a fitness app. Several online fitness apps, such as myfitnesspal, will allow you to input this formula into their calorie calculators. 

How many calories do 100 jumping jacks burn? You may ask. Performing 100 jumping jacks in ten minutes will burn approximately 100 calories. A set of 100 repetitions can take you 5 minutes to complete. Going by this, it means that 100 jumping jacks burn up to 20 calories. 

How many calories does a jumping jack burn? A single jumping jack burns approximately 0.2 calories. This is derived from breaking down the 20 calories burned by performing 100 jumping jacks. 

What determines the amount of calories burned doing jumping jacks?

The amount of calories burned is different from person to person. This figure will vary depending on factors like body weight and workout intensity. Your age will also have an impact on the number of calories burned to do jumping jacks. Here are the main factors to consider when calculating calorie burn

  • Body Size and Weight

When it comes to body weight, it is important to note that the heavier a person, the more calories burned when performing jumping jacks. Heavier people have more load to support, and this makes them use more energy compared to people with less weight. 

  • Number of Jumping Jacks and Speed

Calories burned by jumping jacks will increase significantly if you intensify your workout session. Intensity can be increased by speed and extending the duration of training. This will put your muscles under more pressure for a prolonged period and result in burning more calories. 

  • Your age

How old are you? The higher the figure in this answer, the lower the calories burned to do jumping jacks. What does this mean to you? It simply means that the calories burned doing jumping jacks will reduce significantly as you grow older. This is because older people have more fats than muscles in the body and therefore reduce the rate at which calories are burned.  

  • Gender

Women have more fat than muscles on their bodies compared to their male counterparts who have more muscles than fats. This makes women burn calories at a slower rate compared to men when performing jumping jacks at the same intensity. 

How to Do Jumping Jacks 

How to do jumping jacks

This is one simple exercise with tremendous results. Also, jumping jacks just like push ups do not require any equipment and can be done anywhere. All you need is a small space that can allow you to jump and raise your hands overhead. This is the step to step guide on how to perform the standard jumping jacks properly.  

Step 1:

Get in a straight standing position with feet together and arms hanging on the sides with palms lightly touching your thighs. Ensure to engage your core muscles to ensure a steady, upright posture.

Step 2: 

Make a jump and split your legs apart as you simultaneously raise your hands overhead as if to clap. You should have a little bend at the knees as you softly land on your feet.

Step 3: 

Without pausing, jump back to a straight posture by bringing your feet back together. Your hands should simultaneously move back to the staring positioning. 

Step 4:

Repeat this at a manageable pace while finding your rhythm. Aim at three sets of 20 repetitions each. You may opt to have some music in the background to help you sustain your pace. 

Safety Tip: Always make sure that you are performing jumping jacks in a leveled and steady ground. Uneven terrain may result in injuries like dislocation of the ankle and knee joint pain. You should also wear comfortable sports shoes for stable jumps.

What Are The Different Variations Of Jumping Jacks?

Just like when doing squats, you don’t have to stick to the “standard” way of doing jumping jacks. This will turn this activity into a boring one. That’s not what you want. Here are three variations of jumping jacks you may consider including in your workout to maintain the excitement and keep having fun as you burn more calories:

  • Front Clap

In this particular variation, just a single clap and your shoulder, triceps, biceps, quads, hamstrings, lats, glutes, and calve muscles are awakened!!. Quite a list, isn’t it? Additionally, your cardiovascular muscles will also be activated. That’s how extensive this exercise can be. 

How To Do Front Clap Jumping Jack

Step 1:

Get in a straight standing position with feet together, and arms extended in front of you at chest level parallel to the floor. Your palms should be facing each other as if to clap. 

Ensure to engage your core muscles. 

Step 2: 

Make a jump by splitting your legs apart as you open up your hands to the sides. Keep your hands at shoulder level and parallel to the floor. You should have a little bend at the knees as you softly land on your feet.

Step 3: 

Without pausing, jump back to a straight posture by bringing your feet back together. Your hands should simultaneously move back to the original position, this time clapping. 

 Step 4:

Repeat this at a manageable pace while finding your rhythm. Aim at three sets of 20 repetitions each. You may opt to have some music in the background to help you sustain your pace. 

  • Alternating Jacks

From the name, you can tell there is some isolation involved here. Alternating jumping jacks are characterized by splitting your hands and legs in the front and back positions. Not the sides as in the clapping jumping jacks. This variation targets your quads, hamstring, glutes, hip flexors, and inner thigh muscles. 

How To Do Alternating Jumping Jacks

Step 1: Stand in a straight position with your feet together and arms held straight by your side. Engage your core muscles and pinch your shoulders back. 

Step 2: Jump as you place your left leg in front and the right leg behind. Simultaneously extent your right hand forward and the left backward. This is more like the same sport running. Swinging your hands will help you enhance your balance. 

Step 3:Jump and alternate so that your left leg goes to the back as you bring the right to the front. Your hands should also alternate. Do not pause in between the jumps. Coming forward, your hands should be raised slightly above the shoulder level.

Step 4: Repeat this and aim at three sets of 20 repetitions each. Background music is good for rhythm and injecting some excitement in the exercise. 

  • Plank Jumping Jacks 

Whenever planks are mentioned, you can be sure of your abs being assigned some duties. Who said jumping jacks could only be done in a standing position? That is not the case. The plank jacks are performed in a plank position as you put your legs apart and bring them back together. It activates your core, glutes, quads, hamstring, adductor, and calve muscles. 

How To Do Planking Jumping Jacks

Step 1: Get in a high plank position with your body supported on your fully extended arms. Arms should be at shoulder width. 

Step 2: Ensure a straight position from head to heels with feet together and supported on your toes. This will be your starting position. 

Step 3: Support your upper body with your hands as you jump to split your legs apart. Let them land on either side at a position slightly wider than your shoulder width. 

Step 4: Support your upper body and jump to bring your legs back to the starting position without pausing. Aim at three sets of 10 repetitions each. Don’t bend your back inward. Doing so will put pressure on your spine at the lower back. 

Muscles worked doing jumping jacks

how many calories do jumping jacks burn

This is an electrifying compound exercise that recruits quite a several muscle groups on your body. It also doubles as a cardio exercise, which helps you burn some fats. Let look at the muscles worked by jumping jacks. 

  • Deltoids and Traps

 Deltoids are the muscles of your shoulders, while traps are located on the upper part of your back, connecting to the neck. These two muscles are the most activated in jumping jacks as you swing your hands. They are mainly activated when you do overhead hand raises. 

  • Biceps and Triceps

Different variations hit these two-arm muscles with different intensity. The plank jumping jacks is the variation that targets the arm muscles more than any other. This is because your arms are fully engaged to support your upper body as your jump to split your legs.  

  • Core Muscles 

It doesn’t matter the variation of jumping jacks you are performing. All of them find a way of engaging your abs, obliques, and lower back muscles. In standing jumping jacks variations, your core is activated to maintain balance and proper form throughout this exercise. 

  • Quads and Hamstring 

You cannot call it a jump if you do not involve your legs. Quads are located on the upper front part of your thigh, and the hamstrings are muscles at the back of your thigh. Any walking, running, or even standing position will call these muscles to action. Jumping jacks rigorously recruit these muscles . Also, if you want more pronounced quads, we recommend you pair your jumping jacks with other exercises such as squats. 

  • Hip Adductors and Abductor’s muscles

While the abductors refer to your thigh’s inner muscles, the hip abductors refer to the outer muscles on your thighs that stretch from the hip to the knee. These two muscles are rigorously worked and properly toned when you frequently perform jumping jacks. Especially variations that involve side jumps. 

  • Calves and Foot Muscles

The calf is referred to as the muscles at the back of your leg. They are activated to facilitate jumps. They work in coordination with the Achilles tendons and your feet’ muscles to spring into jumps. They are worked in every single jump you make. 

  • Cardiovascular Muscles

Jumping jacks is a remarkable cardio exercise. Raising your heart rate trains your heart muscles to pump more oxygenated blood to your muscles to sustain the physical activity, which will help you burn more calories. Performing this exercise recruits all your  muscles. 

Jumping jack benefits

Benefits of Jumping Jacks 

  • Best Way To Warm Up

The ability to jump jacks to raise your heart rate and work muscle groups on your body does an excellent warm-up exercise. It ensures a preliminary supply of sufficient oxygen to all the muscles and therefore prepares them for heavier workouts. 

  • A Good Full Body Exercise

From head to toe, jumping jacks trigger activity in every muscle group on your body. Jumping while swinging your hands and shuffling your legs ensures total body muscle stimulation, which is especially good for proportional muscle toning. Additionally, this exercise activates your brain too.  

  • Makes You More Flexible 

Toning is to the muscles while flexibility is to the joints. It can be confidently stated that jumping jacks are exercises that work all the joints of your body.

 From your toes, ankle, knee, hip, shoulder, elbow, and wrist joint, no single joint is left out. This is why doing jumping jacks will result in extraordinary total body flexibility.   

  • Good for Your Heart 

With every single jump, you get closer to the heart. Your cardiovascular muscles are awakened to work much harder to supply blood to your muscles. 

The more you perform this exercise, the stronger your cardiovascular muscles become. A strong and healthy heart reduces the risks of heart-related diseases.   

  • Helps in Weight Loss 

This being a cardio exercise, you can be assured of burning more calories. It goes a long way in helping you lose weight. Any exercise that raises your heart rate is superb for burning extra fat. If losing weight is your goal, then this fun-filled and exciting exercise is your best option.

  • Enhanced Body Coordination

Jumping jacks mainly involves synchronized movements of the opposite sides’ body parts. It trains your brain and your entire body to have high levels of coordination. 

You cannot achieve the simultaneous movements involved in jumping jacks unless your body can effectively coordinate. Continually performing this exercise will enhance the coordination of your body parts. 

  • Lowers your Stress Levels 

Jumping while swinging your hands in several angles, stimulates the release of adrenaline and serotonin hormones. These two are excitement enhancing hormones which will reduce the level of stress in your body. Frequently performing jumping jacks will keep your stress levels low 

  • Superb Muscle Toner 

You might not expect much muscle-building from jumping jacks, but this is a stunning option for toning your muscles. Its cardio characteristics make it shade off the extra fat and leave you with lean and aesthetically toned muscles. It astonishingly tones every muscle on your body. 

  • Stability and Stamina

If a particular exercise can work your entire musculoskeletal system and the joints, then it stands out as the ultimate stamina and stability workout.

 This is what jumping jacks do to you. This winsome electrifying exercise gives your body outstanding stability and stamina by working both your muscles and the skeletal system. 

  • Stronger Bones

Everyone who religiously performs jumping jacks in its proper form will have a strong skeletal system. With every movement, all bones are activated, and this increases your bone strength and density over time.

 Strengthening your bones is a good way of complementing your well-toned muscles. This can be made possible by including jumping jacks in your  4 day split workout routine

Injury Risks Associated With Jumping Jacks

It will be unfair for us to discuss the benefits without highlighting the risks of jumping jacks. The major injury risks associated with this exercise are sprain and dislocation to your ankle, knees, hip, shoulder, or elbow joints. 

All these joints are actively engaged as you perform jumping jacks. Of all these joints, your ankles are subjected to the most pressure. This makes them more vulnerable to injury. 

How to prevent injury doing jumping jacks

  • Make sure you are working out on a stable and even floor. Jumping jacks performed on uneven ground will most likely result in twisted, sprained, or a dislocated ankle. 
  • Put on well-fitting shock-absorbing shoes that will help reduce the impact of the shock as your land after the jumps. 
  • Always warm up your muscles well before engaging intensively in jumping jacks. This helps to supply more oxygenated blood to your muscles and prevent fatigue. 
  • Always focus on maintaining jumping jacks proper form. Do not jump choose speed over proper form. Land with knees slightly bends to transfer the shock to your muscles and not bones and joints.  
  • Make sure to cool down after the session. 


How many calories does 40 jumping jacks burn 

One hundred jumping jacks will burn up to 20 calories. From this, we can now breakdown and find that one jumping jack burns approximately 0.2 calories. Therefore, 40 jumping jacks burn eight calories. 

How many jumping jacks to burn 500 calories? 

To burn 500 calories doing jumping jacks alone is an uphill task. If one jumping jack burns only 0.2 calories, you’ll need to do 2500 jumping jacks to burn 500 calories. We recommend you use this exercise as a warm up then do other cardio exercises.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *