Does Fidgeting Help in Burning Calories?

burning calories and fidgeting

Exercises scientists have for long been studying everything about fidgeting for more than two decades. Below we discuss a few things about the often asked query regarding the relation between burning calories and fidgeting.

The study of fidgeting

Everyone has seen someone or the other fidget. With a pen, legs, hands, head, twisting, wiggling or others. Many scientists for years have noted that some people more than others. Claude Bouchard is a scientist who has long researched the genetics of fighting and fidgeting. In his research, he concluded that some individuals are programmed to move more than other biologically.


Many scientists now believe that some people are genetically inclined spontaneously move around or move in place more than others. But fidgeting often reflects issues of discomfort, uneasiness, or restlessness. Restlessness can also be a starting point for some people to help them get more alert or raise their physiological arousal. Even though there can be many causes of fidgeting, it can surely relieve stress and mental fear. No wonder fidget spinner became a thing.

Physical activity and fidgeting

Head-nodders, compulsive foot tapper, finger drummers, and pencil tappers were born to lose weight. Fidgeting is a natural lifestyle to some. People adapt to it. It eventually helps them lose so much weight. Fidgeting can cause a laid back of calories to be burnt without any harm or sweat.

Fidgeting burns calories

Most people who fidget a little bit too much almost never gain weight despite eating the same amount of food as non-fidgeters. The key factor here is the weight gain is overshadowed by the number of calories an individual burns by tapping their foot for over six hours a day for instance. Each movement counts and if an individual taps their foot the entire duration they were at work or school which can easily be anywhere between five to eight hours day, it’s gonna be difficult to gain weight after all.


Regardless of whether or not your burn calories with exercise or without, your body is capable of switching on non-exercise activity thermogenesis or NEAT. NEAT is a mechanism that switches on when individuals move in any way, from reaching to grab your cereal box to doing laundry and from chewing gum to riding your bicycle. So basically you are burning calories at all times, even with a tap of your foot or typing away at your laptop. However, its only a fraction of what you burn in an entire day after it all adds up. But the bigger picture is that every calorie lost counts. You can lose upto 42 calories while sitting and reading for half an hour, while you will lose 28 by binge watching television.

In Conclusion:

Even though antsy people and big fidgeters are assumed to be bored, frustrated or hyperactive by most onlookers, the fidgeting movement can help a good deal. Most excessive fidgeters are skinny for a reason. The antsiness causes rapid movement which in itself is an unintentional form of physical activity. However, if you find yourself being automatically jerking your limbs make sure you keep your legs under the table. But dedicated work outs are always going to be your best bet at getting your dream shape and being your goal weight.