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Which Is Better – Pickleball v. Walking

News Stacie Townsend 04-14-2020

A pilot study analyzed the differences between 30 minutes of pickleball doubles and 30 minutes of walking at a self-selected pace (Smith, M et al. 2016, “A Comparison of Pickleball and Walking: A Pilot Study”, Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, vol. 48, no. 5S, pp. 93-94). The pilot study compared the following factors to determine which is better – pickleball or walking:

  • Average heart rate
  • Peak heart rate
  • Total steps taken
  • Total calories expended
  • Overall perceived level of exertion
  • Overall enjoyment level

So, did pickleball or walking do better in connection with each factor?

  • Average heart rate – Pickleball caused a higher average heart rate than walking.
  • Peak heart rate – Pickleball caused a higher peak heart rate than walking.
  • Total steps taken – Walking caused more steps to be taken than walking.
  • Total calories expended – Pickleball caused more calories to be expended than walking.
  • Overall perceived level of exertion – Pickleball caused greater perceived exertion than walking.
  • Overall enjoyment level – Pickleball caused greater enjoyment than walking.

In conclusion, pickleball exceeded walking with respect to each factor, other than the total steps taken. As a result, pickleball is better than walking!

Would you rather walk or play pickleball?! Share with us in the comments below!


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