Lawn mowing, gardening, and landscaping activities may not seem like a great way to keep yourself fit. But you would be surprised to know that as per Harvard University, a 135 lbs person can burn about 165 calories mowing the lawn using a manual push mower in just 30 minutes. A heavier person weighing about 185 lbs would burn 231 calories. The number of calories burned mowing the lawn will be fewer if you use a power rower.
Mowing the lawn is a low-impact cardio workout, as it requires you to constantly move around while pushing the mower. It can help you burn a decent number of calories in case you are trying to lose weight or are living a calorie-constraint lifestyle. Use our calories burned mowing the lawn calculator to find out if it can help you get leaner and stronger.
💡 Quick Tip: According to CDC, lawnmowers can generate noise as loud as 80 to 100 dB. Sounds as high as 100 db are dangerous for human ears. They could cause hearing loss if the exposure time exceeds 15 minutes. If you mow your lawn frequently, ditch the ear muffs and buy a good quality noise cancellation headphones such as 3M WorkTunes Connect Hearing Protector. These headphones are specifically designed for ear protection and can be used along with hats/caps.
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About our calories burned mowing the lawn calculator
A lot of people use smartwatches to track the number of calories they burn doing a certain activity. Most of these smartwatches use your speed and heart rate to calculate the number of calories you burn. But, they do not consider important factors such as your bodyweight and the intensity of the task i.e. its MET value. That's why the result they provide may not be accurate.
Our calories burned mowing the lawn calculator uses a scientific formula to provide you with as accurate a result as possible. There is no scope for guesswork. Our tool uses your bodyweight and the MET value of a task; the two major factors that decide the number of calories you burn doing a certain activity.
The formula is-
Calories burned per minute = (MET x body weight in Kg x 3.5) ÷ 200
📖 Related Article: Did you know shoveling snow from your driveway is also an excellent cardio and strength training workout? To find out how it can help you stay fit, use our calories burned shoveling snow calculator.
MET value of lawn mowing
As I said above, Metabolic Equivalent of Task tells how difficult it is when compared to sitting. The MET value of sitting is 1. Standing has a MET value of 1.5, which means it is 1.5 times more difficult than sitting and needs 1.5 times more energy. Walking has a MET value of 3 to 5, so you can expect to burn 3 to 5 times more energy. Running can help you burn 9 to 14 times more energy as it has a MET value of 9 to 14.
Just like any activity, the MET value of lawn mowing varies depending on the type of mower you are using and the intensity at which you are mowing.
- If you are using a power mower with light to moderate effort, the MET value can be 4
- Using a power rower vigorously can have MET 5
- Hand rowing has a MET value of 6-7
- Riding a mower has a MET value of 2.5. It may not be good for weight loss and may not be counted as a great physical activity.
Don’t know what the MET value of the kind of mowing you are doing is? Well, you don’t need to do any manual calculations. Just select the most suitable option from the dropdown menu of our calories burned mowing the lawn calculator. It will auto-pick the MET value to provide you with the most accurate result.
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Factors that affect the number of calories burned mowing the lawn
Type of mower you use
As I said above, the type of mower you use decides the intensity of exercise you get and the number of calories you burn mowing the lawn.
A manual mower requires a lot of effort so manual mowing has a MET value of around 6. Using our calories burned mowing calculator, we found that a 180 lbs person can burn approximately 8.5 calories per minute or 257 calories in 30 minutes. But, if he uses a power mower, the energy expenditure would decrease to 171 calories in 30 minutes. If you want to burn as many calories as possible while working in your garden, start using manual tools. But, remember that mechanical or powered tools help save your time, just in case you want to spend those 15 minutes doing jumping jacks or a quick jog.
As obvious from the formula we have used in our calories burned mowing the lawn calculator, your weight decides the amount of energy you may have to spend for doing a specific activity. The heavier you weigh, the more energy your body will need to move your excess weight. So, obese people often burn more calories than skinny people even if the other factors remain unchanged.
Young people burn more energy because they have a faster metabolism. As you age, your metabolism starts slowing down. So, a young person in his 20s will burn more calories mowing the lawn than a person in his 40s or 50s, even if the other factors do not change.
📖 Related Article: If you use a manual push rower, your ribs may hurt after 30 minutes of mowing. Don’t worry; that's completely normal. Mowing the lawn is a full-body workout but it specifically targets your ab muscles. Read this article to find out Why Your Ribs May Hurt After an Ab Workout.
Calories burned mowing the lawn FAQs
How many calories do you burn mowing the lawn for 30 minutes?
As I said above, it depends on the type of mower you are using and the intensity at which you are mowing. On average, you can burn around 160 to 250 calories mowing the lawn for 30 minutes. To get the exact number, select the most relevant options from the dropdown menu of our calories burned mowing the lawn calculator and add your exact weight. Measure your weight in the morning after using the washroom but before eating or drinking anything.
Calories burned mowing the lawn versus calories burned walking: which is better?
Walking has a MET value of 3.5 to 5 depending on your speed. If your pace is too fast, the MET value may become 5.5 or 6. Mowing the lawn manually has a MET value of 6 to 7 and mowing with the help of a power rower has a MET value of 4. This means you may burn more calories mowing the lawn than walking at a moderate pace.
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Is mowing the lawn a good workout?
Lawn mowing is a low-impact full-body cardio workout. It may not be as good as running for torching calories because of its low intensity. But, that's what makes it special. If you are someone who can’t/doesn’t want to run or do challenging exercises, mowing the lawn is a good form of exercise.
What muscles does mowing the lawn work?
It engages the same muscles that you use for sled pushing. Your upper body muscles such as your triceps and biceps plus your back and core muscles have to do a lot of work. But, the strength and stamina of your leg muscles will ultimately decide the intensity at which you will mow. Lawn mowing is a full-body workout and engages almost all muscles of your body.
Mowing the lawn for 45 minutes to 1 hour is a good way to get your daily dose of workout. It is a fun and enjoyable activity with numerous health benefits. So, whenever your yard needs you, be ready with your mower and tools. Get sweaty and use our calories burned mowing the lawn calculator to find out if it is worth the effort.