5 Best Chair Cardio Exercises To Burn Calories

Lose weight as you sit and work with seated jacks, skater switches, and more.

Reviewed by Rakesh Rathod, Certified Personal Trainer
By Jyotsana Rao

Did you know that you can perform a great weight burning cardio workout while sitting on a chair? Well, it’s true! Chair Cardio routines are the latest fad, and you can burn calories by performing these lovely low-impact exercises and get benefitted!

Read this post and learn how to perform these simple, yet effective chair cardio exercises and the precautions to take while doing them.

Top 5 Chair Cardio Exercises For Burning Calories

Equipment Needed:

  • A flat-backed sturdy chair (without wheels)

Once the equipment is ready, proceed to the first exercise:

1. Seated Jacks:

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Usually, we begin most routines with a round of jumping jacks for warming up. What is more incredible is that you can also perform seated jacks, which help you burn a good amount of calories without getting drenched in sweat.


  1. Sit straight with your knees together.
  2. Join your knees and keep your toes pointed.
  3. Your elbows should be bent and your arms open to the sides.
  4. Your palms should face forward.
  5. Take both legs out to the sides and flex your feet.
  6. Let your legs land on the heel and bring your arms together above your head, just like a normal jumping jack.
  7. Now begin returning to the starting position.
  8. Perform 25-30 reps in a row.

2. Skater Switch:

Image: Shutterstock

This low-impact version of a side skater blasts calories while engaging the core, inner thighs, arms, and shoulders.


  1. Move to the edge of your chair.
  2. Bend your right knee out to the side and extend your left leg out to the other side.
  3. Keep your toes pointed.
  4. Begin extending your arms and leaning forward.
  5. Try and reach the inside of your right foot with your left arm.
  6. Immediately, switch over and do the same with the right arm and the left foot.
  7. Rest and repeat.
  8. Perform 25-30 alternating reps.

3. Leg Lift And Twist:

Image: Shutterstock

This routine is quite beneficial for your body. The leg-lift and twist tones your inner thighs, abs and quadriceps.


  1. Sit on the edge of the chair.
  2. Begin extending your right leg straight. Remember to keep your foot grounded throughout.
  3. Cross your arms over your chest and brace your abs tight.
  4. Rotate your torso to the right as you lift your right leg to the left knee.
  5. Squeeze your knees together and begin returning to the starting position.
  6. Switch sides and repeat.
  7. Perform around 15-25 reps.

4. Hinge And Cross:

Image: Shutterstock

This routine is good for strengthening your abs and back muscles, while also working out your lower body.


  1. Sit straight with your knees together.
  2. Keep your toes pointed and lift your hands and bring them behind your head.
  3. Bracing your abs, hinge back a bit so that your shoulder blades barely touch the chair’s back.
  4. Cross your right elbow and your left knee.
  5. Begin returning to the starting position.
  6. Switch sides and repeat.
  7. Perform 20 alternating reps.

5. Chair Running:

Image: Shutterstock

This is probably one of the funniest chair cardio exercises on this list. Running from the comfort of your chair might sound ludicrous, but this routine has been proven to work your arms, abs and legs while providing you with an excellent cardio workout. Moreover, with this routine, you can run even when you wear heels.


  1. Sit straight and extend your legs.
  2. Keep your toes pointed and your arms bent at the sides.
  3. Brace your abs tight and let your shoulder blades touch the back of the chair lightly.
  4. Begin bending your right knee into your chest and turn your left shoulder towards your knee.
  5. Pull your right elbow back and switch sides immediately.
  6. Alternate and do 25-30 quick repetitions.

Now, let’s check out some precautions you need to take to do these exercises safely.

Precautions To Take

  • Always choose a sturdy chair that does not shake or fall over easily.
  • Don’t push yourself too hard during your workout. Aim for doing moderately intense exercises that leave you feeling a little out of breath and possibly a little warmer than usual.
  • Avoid holding your breath when working out.

Cardio exercises are good for your health and help burn those calories. While cardio is often associated with vigorous exercises or intense outdoor activities, that isn’t always the case. Chair cardio exercises are easy to do in the comfort of your home. All you need is a handy, sturdy chair, and you’re ready to go! You can turn those tedious working hours into fulfilling exercise time to get fitter. However, make sure you do the exercise correctly, as an incorrect form can lead to injuries or muscle pains.

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Jyotsana Rao is an engineering graduate from NIT, Nagpur, who discovered her love for writing during her undergraduate days. She... more

Rakesh Rathod

(Certified Personal Trainer)
Rakesh Rathod is a certified fitness trainer and yoga instructor with more than 20 years of experience in the fitness... more