Aerobic classes are most effective when trying to lose weight. These classes offer the highest calorie burn per session. Group indoor cycling and kickboxing are at the top of the list, burning over 700 calories per hour. While regular yoga doesn’t burn too many calories, Bikram Yoga, or “hot yoga,” is just the opposite: A 60-minute class can burn up 1,000 calories.
If you’re extremely overweight or have a medical condition, you might have to start with lighter exercise. Classes that don’t raise your heart rate too much or that are easier on the joints are good choices. An example is water aerobics, which is good for seniors or obese people. A 185-lb. person burns about 350 calories an hour doing water aerobics. Pilates, stretching and low-impact aerobics also stress the body less and burn fewer calories than aerobic classes.