How Many Calories Does Dancing Burn?

Fred Astaire Dance Studios encourages people to dance in 2021 to burn calories and improve their physical and mental health.

Around this time of year, Americans start making New Year’s Resolutions. Many people resolve to set a spending budget, read more books, or keep clutter at bay. But, losing weight and adopting a healthier lifestyle remains the number one resolution people set for the new year. A survey of more than 1,000 Americans reveals 37 percent of Americans made it a goal to lose weight in 2020, while 50 percent wanted to exercise more, and 43 percent tried to eat healthier, according to, a global research firm.

If you are one of the many Americans who has packed on the pounds since the start of the pandemic, you are not alone. A poll published in May reveals 47 percent of women and 22 percent of men gained weight due to COVID-19 restrictions. At least 21 percent of the more than 1,000 people surveyed gained 10 to 20 pounds, WebMD reported. Whether you gained weight this year, or simply overindulged in Christmas cookies and peppermint martinis during the holidays, creating an exercise routine for the new year is key.

Dancing is a great way to burn calories, and it’s fun. Dancing can bolster mental health while it improves physical fitness. Dancing helps people burn fat, lose weight, and increase metabolism. It also can increase flexibility, improve muscle strength, and bolster endurance. High-energy dances like the salsa, cha-cha, and swing are great options for getting your heart pumping.

Here’s the lowdown on how many calories you can burn twirling around the dance floor, according to Fitness Blender, an online workout provider focusing on aerobics and weightlifting. A person weighing approximately 180 pounds will burn 480 calories during 60 minutes of salsa dancing, and about 300 calories swing dancing. In general, slow ballroom dances will burn up to 220 calories, and fast dances fall in the 320-calorie range. For people keeping track, that’s nearly the same amount as jogging or cycling.

Check out these dancers performing some high-energy, calorie-burning routines on “Dancing With the Stars,” a popular, televised dance competition show.

In this clip, Derek Hough and Hayley Erbert dance the paso doble to “Uccen,” by Taalbi Brothers. The paso doble is a dance that hails from Spain and uses the traditional bullfight as its inspiration.

Several dancers, including Nev Schulman and Jenna Johnson, perform the cha-cha to “Rain On Me,” by Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande. The dance relays are a new addition to the show’s 2020 season to comply with safety guidelines. The relay allows competitors to dance with a single partner all season. Each couple has the opportunity to earn bonus points during the relay.

In this relay, a group of dancers perform the samba to “Levitating,” by Dua Lipa. The Brazillian Carnival dance is fast-paced and a great option for burning calories.

If you are ready to lose weight during 2021, dancing burns calories and offers a unique option to try. Contact your local Fred Astaire Dance Studios location to schedule a lesson or visit the Online Lesson Platform to stream a lesson to your living room.