## What is a Calorie?

Webster’s defines a calorie as: "A measurement of the amount of heat or energy produced by food." The foods we eat every day need to be broken down and metabolized by our bodies. These foods are comprised of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. The name of the unit of measure used to label this process is a calorie. Different foods have different calories based upon their individual compositions of these proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. How do we measure the amount of energy needed to burn one calorie of food consumed? By measuring calories.

In truth, different activities burn different amounts of calories. Basic body functions such as digestion and respiration burn calories. But what about exercise? Do different exercises or sports burn different calories? What are the calories burned playing basketball?

## What is Metabolism

Webster’s defines metabolism as: "The chemical and physical changes in living cells which involve the maintenance of life." In other words, it is the series of chemical reactions that convert the foods we eat into the energy we need to live. Our metabolic rate plays a significant role in how efficiently our metabolism works, and how well our bodies burn energy. As we age, our natural metabolism slows. Exercise increases metabolism. The more we exercise, the more efficiently our metabolism works.

## Comparing Sports

Simply put, the greater the intensity of the exercise regimen or sport, the greater the number of calories burned. Basketball is considered a moderate sport in that you can get a good workout and burn some great calories, not as much as a high intensity sport or activity, but more than a low intensity workout. For example, one hour of average intensity league basketball will burn on average 422 calories for an individual weighing approximately 155 pounds. Yet, if that same individual chose to go bicycling for that same hour at a rate of speed of approximately 10-11.9 mph, he or she would burn approximately 563 calories. Conversely, if that same person chose instead to take up archery, only 246 calories would be burned within that hour.

## The Weight Factor

What you weigh is also a factor. A 15 minute half court one-on-one game between two people, one weighing 180 pounds and the other weighing 200 pounds would result in the 180 pound person burning 122 calories, while the 200 pound person would burn 136 calories.

## Difference Between Different Basketball Positions

Calories burned can vary between sports, as well as positions within each sport. A person weighing 190 pounds will burn 518 calories in one hour a standard game, 604 calories in a one hour non-competitive match, and 561 calories shooting baskets. In fact, even the referee can burn 388 calories.

## Great Fun and Great Exercise

When it comes to burning calories, basketball is a great way to have fun and get fit. The calories burned playing basketball provide a moderate intensity workout, but also allow for a great way to relieve stress, get fit, and enjoy some time with friends.

## References

Hot Exercise: How Many Calories are Burnt During Exercise? – www.hotexercise.com

NutriStrategy: Calories Burned During Exercise – www.nutristrategy.com