Can House Cleaning Count as Exercise? (Useful Guide With Video)

Can House Cleaning Count as Exercise? You are done with all household chores, cleaning, cooking, weeding the backyard, and other housework, and you feel very tired. However, feeling that you haven’t exercised, you head out to the gym, exhausted.

Video on Can House Cleaning Count as Exercise?

You are confused and guilty that you didn’t exercise all day. Can house cleaning count as exercise? If this is you, then here’s the good news.

Yard work and house cleaning work is effective exercise, according to fitness studies. Your exhaustion after heavy cleaning work is a sign of working hard. It may not be taken as a compromise to your daily fitness exercise; however, it does contribute to a healthy lifestyle.

How is house cleaning an efficient exercise regime?

Can House Cleaning Count as Exercise?

House cleaning is sufficient, according to Harvard studies. The study states that people who regularly did house cleaning displayed health advantages over those who didn’t. They had a lower percentage of body fat, weight, BMI-Body Mass Index, waist-to-hip ratio, and blood pressure than those who didn’t do regular house chores.

A clean home will raise a positive vibe of the home. It will benefit you physically and mentally. A typical house cleaning routine results in a 5.8 cal burn on average.

House cleaning and their calorie burn value

Here calories mentioned are for one hour for a 150lbs individual on average for the following house cleaning activities:

  • Vacuuming: Calories burnt-176 cal-A pull and push motion strengthens the back, chest, and arms.
  • Gardening: Calories burnt-287 cal-Weeds cleaning is a full-body exercise with planting, squatting, raking leaves, and bending.
  • Bathroom Cleaning: Calories burnt- 180 cal-Toilet scrubbing and cleaning the bathroom will engage your back, core, and arms.
  • Cooking: Calories burnt- 136 cal-This is an upper body workout with whisking, stirring, kneading, and chopping involved while cooking.
  • Mopping: Calories burnt- 248 cal-This is a shoulder workout with pull and push motion.
  • Lawn Mowing: Calories burnt- 375 cal-This is a calorie crush work and focuses your back, thighs, arms, and shoulders.
  • Sweeping: Calories burnt- 272 cal-This is a workout similar to vacuuming and mopping.
  • Shoveling snow: Calories burnt- 428 cal-Feel the calorie burn in your core, arms, legs, shoulders, and back.
  • Laundry: Calories burnt- 150 cal-Retrieving clothes, changing sheets, carrying laundry, ironing, and movement down and up the stairs enhance heart pumping mechanism. This, in return, results in calories burned.
  • Car Cleaning: Calories burnt- 204 cal-Vacuuming your car interiors, exteriors, cleaning, and washing your car elevates heart pumping. This results in calorie burn.
  • Renovating: Calories burnt- 340 cal-This is yet another workout great for upper body parts.
  • Washing dishes: Calories burnt- 164 cal-Your triceps, forearms, chest, and biceps will be exercised and feel the calorie burn.
  • Moving furniture: Calories burnt- 409 cal-Rearranging, spring cleaning, shifting sofas, and beds will demolish your calories.
  • Dusting: Calories burnt- 178 cal-For a full-body workout, try dusting low and high nook and corners of the house.

Comparison of calorie burn to gym workouts

Can House Cleaning Count as Exercise?

House cleaning- 5.8 cal

Below are the listed common workouts in a gym and the number of calorie burn per minute:

  • Treadmill -11.5 cal
  • Stationary bike – 7.7 cal
  • Weight lifting – 3.7 cal
  • Circuit training – 8.8 cal


From the above readings, you can note that the calorie burned with house cleaning is more than weight lifting. However, it is only to imply that house cleaning is not a light workout. It is an excellent exercise for our body when done regularly.

It is a comparable workout to the gym if you do not restrict your body movements. But, do note that your house cleaning is not a replacement for your daily workout, running, or walking. This is because a walk or run in a park lifts your mood to the external environment.

Point to note

House cleaning cannot be treated as a primary form of exercise. It is tough losing weight with just housework. For instance, if you take vacuuming, it burns 130 cal, while cycling can burn 400 cal. On the contrary, some house cleaning works do give you a good calorie burn.

For instance, lawn moving for half an hour with any hand, the mower will result in a 215 cal burn. This is as much as half an hour of walking and jogging combined.

Can House Cleaning Count as Exercise? – Conclusion

Can House Cleaning Count as Exercise?

Here is a table showing different general house cleaning tasks and the estimated number of calories burned per 30 minutes of activity:

Cleaning TaskCalories Burned per 30 Minutes*
Vacuuming90 – 120
Sweeping or Mopping100 – 135
Dusting80 – 110
Washing Dishes80 – 110
Scrubbing Floors150 – 200
Window Cleaning100 – 140
Laundry (Folding and Ironing)70 – 95
Making Beds60 – 80
Gardening or Yard Work140 – 190
General Tidying75 – 100

*Please note that the number of calories burned can vary depending on factors such as individual weight, age, and metabolism. The numbers provided are estimates based on averages.

This table provides an overview of various general house cleaning tasks and the approximate number of calories burned during 30 minutes of activity for each task.

Recently, exercise has been associated with cycling, running, walking, and gym workouts. Our traditional practices have made these. But, it is essential to understand that exercise is an emphasis on any physical activity. This is where house cleaning can also be counted as an exercise. However, it is not the primary exercising form.

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