Forbes Rates Squash as Healthiest Sport

Squash is rated as the healthiest sport in a survey conducted by the widely respected and influential US business magazine Forbes.

While accepting that Health and Fitness are different things the magazine has compiled a list of the 10 healthiest sports. Rating for the different sports are based on consultations with fitness experts – coaches, personal trainers, competitor and exercise physiologists – as well as a dash of personal experience.

The four basic physiological components or fitness are rated on a scale of 1 to 5. Injured risk is also considered.

Squash came out top of the 10 sports highlighted in  the survey.

1.         Squash
2.         Rowing
3.         Rock Climbing
4.         Swimming
5.         Cross-country Skiing
6.         Basketball
7.         Cycling
8.         Running
9.         Modern Pentathlon
10.       Boxing

Forbes states that: “The preferred game of Wall Street has convenience on its side, as 30 minutes on the squash court provides an impressive cardio respiratory workout. Extended rallies and almost constant running builds muscular strength and endurance in the lower body, while lunges, twists and turns increase flexibility in the back and abdomen. For people just getting into the game, it’s almost too much to sustain, but once you get there, squash is tremendous.”

Rating Methodology

Ratings are based upon consultations with fitness experts–coaches, personal trainers, competitors and exercise physiologists–as well as a dash of personal experience. The four basic physiological components of fitness are rated on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being “excellent,” 4 being “darn good,” 3 being “good,” 2 being “not bad” and 1 being “nothing special.”

Injury risk is rated on a scale of 1 to 3, with 3 being “low,” 2 being “so-so” and 1 being “high.” Calorie burn (in parentheses) is based upon the energy expenditure of a 190-pound person over 30 minutes and is rated on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being 450+ calories, 4 being 400-450 calories, 3 being 350-400 calories, 2 being 300-350 calories and 1 being 250-300 calories. Calorie burn rates are from the American College of Sports Medicine; whenever possible, we selected the rate for “moderate” or similar intensity.

Scores were tallied to arrive at an individual rating for each sport. Of course, physiological benefits, injury risks and calorie burn can vary widely depending upon the technique, vigor, care and enthusiasm with which you pursue the sport.

The Forbes website presents a slide show of the ten sports and their ratings. Click here for the slide show.

If you’d like to learn how to play squash, here are 15 Steps to get you started.


Excuse me while I go look up modern pentathlon. 🙂  Hmmm.  It includes five events: pistol shootingépée fencing, 200 m freestyle swimmingshow jumping, and a 3 km cross-country run.  My non-competitive walking did not make the list, but I say it’s the best.

Stay healthy!