Jumping while pregnant is generally considered safe in the first and second trimesters, as long as you listen to your body and don’t overexert yourself. However, in the third trimester, jumping is not recommended due to the increased weight on your pelvic floor and joints.
Here are some quick answers to common questions about jumping while pregnant:
- Is jumping safe in early pregnancy? Yes, jumping gently is generally safe in the first trimester.
- When does jumping become risky during pregnancy? Jumping becomes more risky starting in the third trimester when your belly is quite big.
- What are the risks of jumping while pregnant? Risks include falls, strain on pelvic floor muscles, and jarring of the baby.
- Are small hops okay? Yes, small hops and skipping in place is often fine in the first and second trimesters.
- Can I jump on a trampoline pregnant? No, trampolines are too risky due to falls and abdominal trauma.
Guidelines for Jumping While Pregnant
If you want to incorporate some light jumping into your exercise routine during pregnancy, here are some guidelines to follow:
- Avoid high, explosive jumps that overexert you or cause discomfort.
- Opt for small hops or skipping in place to minimize intensity.
- Make sure you have plenty of space and a clear landing area.
- Wear supportive shoes with good traction.
- Listen to your body and stop if you feel pain, contractions, leakage, or other concerning symptoms.
- Stay hydrated and avoid overheating.
- Avoid jumping on uneven surfaces or slippery floors where falls are more likely.
Jumping jacks, box jumps, and other plyometric moves may be okay in moderation in the first trimester but become more risky as pregnancy progresses. Jumping rope should be avoided throughout pregnancy due to the risk of falling or tripping on the rope.
Benefits of Jumping While Pregnant
Here are some potential benefits of incorporating gentle jumping into your exercise routine during the first and second trimesters:
- Cardiovascular health: Jumping gets your heart rate up safely and improves circulation.
- Muscle strength: Jumping uses your core and lower body muscles to stabilize your body.
- Impact absorption: Jumping may help maintain bone density as your baby draws calcium from your bones.
- Balance and coordination: The dynamic movements challenge your balance and coordination in a safe way.
- Mental health: Jumping can be a fun way to relieve stress and boost your mood with those feel-good endorphins!
However, these benefits should be weighed against potential risks as your pregnancy progresses. Always listen to your healthcare provider’s advice about appropriate exercises.
Risks of Jumping While Pregnant
Here are some potential risks to be aware of with jumping while pregnant:
- Falling: Jumping increases your risk of falling, especially as you gain weight and your center of gravity shifts. Falls can lead to injuries and complications.
- Joint strain: Your joints loosen during pregnancy due to increased relaxin hormone. Jumping puts extra strain on knees, ankles and hips.
- Pelvic floor impact: High-impact jumping can weaken pelvic floor muscles, increasing risk of leakage and prolapse later.
- Abdominal trauma: Hard landings or falls could potentially injure your uterus, placenta or baby.
- Overheating: Jumping raises your core temperature quickly, which can be dangerous for baby.
- Dehydration: Jumping causes sweating and rapid fluid loss if you aren’t drinking enough.
- Soft tissue injuries: Jumping can lead to pulled muscles, ligament sprains and other soft tissue injuries.
These risks are greatly increased in the third trimester when your belly is heavy and your mobility is restricted. At that point, low-impact exercise is safest.
Guidelines by Trimester
Here are some trimester-specific guidelines for jumping while pregnant:
- Listen to your body and don’t push through pain or excessive fatigue.
- Avoid jumping vigorously on hard surfaces that could jar your body.
- Stay hydrated and avoid overheating which can be dangerous early on.
- Warm up gradually before jumping to prepare muscles and increase blood flow.
- Pay attention for leakage or other warning signs to stop.
- Avoid high, explosive jumps as belly size increases.
- Wear a supportive bra and maternity belt to take pressure off pelvic floor.
- Do jumps in moderation to avoid overworking your changing joints.
- Stop jumping if you feel weak, dizzy or have pain/contractions.
- Avoid jumping on slippery or uneven surfaces with higher fall risk.
- No high-impact jumps which could injure the pelvic floor and cervix.
- Small hops may still be okay but listen to your healthcare provider.
- Prioritize low-impact cardio like walking, swimming or prenatal yoga.
- If you feel jarring, pulling or pain when jumping, stop immediately.
- Avoid jumps on both feet or hopping due to increased fall risk.
Expert Opinions on Jumping While Pregnant
Most experts agree that jumping in moderation is okay in the first and early second trimesters, but should be avoided later on. Here are some expert opinions on jumping while pregnant:
- “Small hops or jumps can be a safe part of an exercise routine early on. But avoid high-impact jumping as pregnancy progresses due to risks of falls and leakage.” – Dr. Marie Brown, OB/GYN
- “Listen to your body and don’t push through pain when jumping. Stop immediately if you have any concerning symptoms.” – Dr. Amanda Smith, Family Medicine Doctor
- “Avoid jumping on hard surfaces or with jarring landings which could potentially detach the placenta.” – Dr. Mark Jones, OB/GYN
- “Jumping can strengthen muscles but shouldn’t replace Kegel exercises for pelvic floor health.” – Becky, Pre/Postnatal Physical Therapist
- “Use caution when jumping to avoid straining loose pregnancy ligaments and soft tissues.” – Mike, Orthopedic Physical Therapist
- “Opt for low-impact cardio in third trimester to prepare body for labor without unnecessary strain.” – Susan, Women’s Health Physical Therapist
- “Avoid jumping with excessive force or onto hard surfaces which could jar internal organs.” – Hannah, Pre/Postnatal Personal Trainer
- “Listen to your body and don’t try to push through the same jumps you could do pre-pregnancy.” – Steve, Personal Trainer Specializing in Prenatal Fitness
- “Hydrate well before and after jumping to prevent dizziness, fatigue and Braxton Hicks contractions.” – Jessica, Personal Trainer and Prenatal Yoga Instructor
Tips for Safe Jumping During Pregnancy
Here are some tips for keeping your jumping safe and low-impact during pregnancy:
- Warm up first with walking, light cardio or dynamic stretches.
- Wear supportive shoes with good traction to prevent slips.
- Jump on a padded, springy surface rather than concrete.
- Keep both feet on the ground for gentle hops rather than jumping.
- Use plyometric moves without excessive height or impact.
- Keep your core engaged and land softly with bent knees to cushion.
- Listen to your body and stop at the first sign of discomfort or pain.
- Stay hydrated and avoid overheating.
- Consider a maternity support belt, especially as your belly grows.
The key is paying attention to your body’s signals and avoiding movements that cause pain, leakage or other concerning symptoms. Stop jumping immediately if anything feels off.
Exercises to Avoid
Here are some specific exercises that involve jumping or bouncing that should be avoided during pregnancy:
Jumping jacks involve high-impact jumping and quick side-to-side movement that can strain your back and pelvic floor, especially in later pregnancy. Modifications like small bounces or marching in place are safer.
Jump squats that involve bursting up into a jump from a squatted position should be avoided to protect your pelvic floor. Do regular or sumo squats instead.
Explosively jumping onto a box puts too much high-impact strain on your joints and chances of falling make box jumps too risky during pregnancy.
Jump ropes and double unders should be completely avoided in pregnancy due to the extremely high falling and tripping hazard. Choose another cardio activity with lower risk.
Burpees are very high impact on your joints and involve planking on your stomach, so they are not recommended in pregnancy. Do squats, lunges and marching instead.
Although not as high impact as other plyometric moves, rapidly raising your knees up in front of you can destabilize your balance and lead to falls in late pregnancy. Opt for marching or walking instead.
The wide scissor-kick motion involved in scissor jumps can overstretch your pregnant hips and pelvic muscles. Go for lower impact stepping side to side instead.
Jumping Modifications for Each Trimester
You may be able to continue gentle jumping during pregnancy by making trimester-specific modifications.
- Do plyometric moves with both feet on floor rather than leaving the ground.
- Focus on form and landing softly rather than height.
- Reduce jumping time and increase rest intervals.
- Listen to your body and stop if fatigued or dizzy.
- Eliminate high, explosive jumps.
- Step side to side instead of scissor jumps.
- March with high knees instead of high knee jumps.
- Hold onto wall or chair for stability if needed.
- Stop high-impact jumps completely.
- Carefully hop in place without leaving floor if tolerated.
- March in place instead of jogging or jumping.
- Avoid plyometric moves involving quick direction changes.
Talk to your healthcare provider about appropriate modifications for your unique pregnancy.
Light jumping in the first and early second trimester is generally considered safe, as long as you listen to your body and don’t overexert yourself. However, jumping becomes more risky as pregnancy progresses and the impact on your pelvic floor, joints and balance increases. Small hops or plyometric moves can be modified to keep intensity low. Avoid high-impact jumping completely in the third trimester and if you have any pain or discomfort when jumping. Always get guidance from your healthcare provider about the right exercise modifications for each stage of your pregnancy.