Skip Nav
Beginner Fitness Tips
4 Poses, 4 Minutes, and Your Hips and Back Will Thank You
Healthy Living
12 Women Who Will Make You Want to Do the Tone It Up Workouts
Weight Loss
A Simple — and Free — Weight-Loss Technique

Soccer Beats Jogging in Weight Loss and Fun

As if we needed another reason to love Becks, but here's one more. A new study found playing soccer to be more beneficial than jogging (and soccer players had more fun)!

In a comparative study, involving untrained men, the soccer team created more new muscle and lost more weight than the joggers. The study ran for three months with participants in both groups working out 2 to 3 times a week for an hour. However, both groups showed significant improvements in blood pressure, insulin sensitivity and balance. Meaning...wait for it...exercise in general is a good thing.

Researchers believe the shifts between walking, running and sprinting caused the soccer players to experience health improvements. These changes in speed and intensity are very similar to interval training, which has been shown to increase the benefits of cardio workouts. Plus theses sudden changes in speed use both the quick and slow twitch muscle fibers, where jogging just works the slow fibers.

The major difference between the two groups was their opposing attitudes to their workouts -- Unlike the joggers who found their runs difficult, the soccer players enjoyed their practice.

Moral of the story: Playing on a team has multiple benefits. Focusing on your teammates (and winning) masks the physical effort. So what are you waiting for? Becks to be your coach? A girl can dream, but find a team near you and have fun on the field.


Around The Web
Chewing Helps With Weight Loss
Best Lunch Recipes For Weight Loss
Top 10 Highest-Calorie Beers (and the 10 Lowest!)
How to Prevent a Side Stitch When Running
20-Minute Treadmill Workout
Is Diet More Important to Weight Loss Than Exercise?
How to Make Running Feel Easier

POPSUGAR, the #1 independent media and technology company for women. Where more than 75 million women go for original, inspirational content that feeds their passions and interests.

Join The Conversation
rustyofseattle rustyofseattle 8 years
This certainly makes sense to me...I've never seen a fat professional soccer player, but I've seen fat people in both professional baseball and football. I almost forgot...Professional Bowling doesn't seem to have the fittest people either!
UrbanBohemian UrbanBohemian 8 years
For serious? Wow!
mwmsjuly19 mwmsjuly19 8 years
I'm not a team player. It's in my genes to go solo.
therack therack 8 years
I joined a team in college, and played for about 4 months. I went from a size 8/9 to a size 4. It was so much fun it didn't seem like exersize! I wish I had the time to play but working on a cruise ship kinda hinders that...
Kyko Kyko 8 years
I think the "find a team" link doesn't work...and I want to find a team! I'm VERY interested in group sports outside of college athletics. PLEASE let me know if there is an actual "find your team" link!
Baby-Girl Baby-Girl 8 years
I played soccer for 12 years and it kept me in shape year round. You get so involved in the game that you don't even feel tired from the workout. Man I miss it.
Latest Fitness