Can I Do a Workout with Braces?

Considering a workout with braces? Here’s everything you need to know before hitting the gym with a mouth full of metal.


Individuals who wear braces often wonder if they can safely exercise with their braces, and the answer is a resounding “Yes!” With a few simple tips, you can exercise safely and comfortably with braces to maintain your healthy lifestyle.

It’s important to take extra care when exercising with braces by following some simple guidelines to prevent any damage or discomfort. To protect your brackets, wires and other components of your braces during physical activities, you should begin by choosing the right type of workout attire. Wear clothing that is loose-fitting and light-weight so your brackets do not press hard against your skin when you are moving around. It’s also a good idea to wrap protective tape or gauze around the parts of your teeth that may be irritated by friction against straps, laces or other materials during physical activity.

In addition to the special precautions that need to be taken while exercising with braces, there are also certain exercises that should be avoided. High impact activities such as running and jumping may cause undue strain on your braces, so it may be wise to avoid these kinds of activities entirely or make sure you use proper footwear for additional cushioning during high impact exercises. Sports such as wrestling or boxing pose additional risks since participants may come into direct contact with one another’s faces; if you participate in these types of sports, make sure to wear a properly fitted mouth guard for extra protection for both your braces and teeth.

What to Avoid

Working out with braces can be a tricky endeavor. While it’s certainly possible and even beneficial in some cases, there are certain exercises and activities that you should avoid while you have braces on. That being said, there are still plenty of healthy activities that you can do with braces, as long as you take certain precautions to ensure that you don’t damage or injure yourself. Let’s take a look at what you can and should avoid when working out with braces.

High-Impact Exercises

High-impact exercises such as running, jumping, and contact sports should be avoided with braces due to the pressure they place on the teeth. High impact activities can potentially shift the teeth unevenly and set back progress made in orthodontic treatment.

Other exercises such as biking, elliptical or cross-training machines, swimming, or yoga can still allow brace wearers to stay active while avoiding damage to the braces. Additionally hopping on a stationary bike for short rides or swimming for shorter lengths of time may also be acceptable.

When attempting new forms of exercise it is important to check with your orthodontist and discuss what types of activities are deemed safest and least dangerous to your treatment plan. When engaging in any type of physical activity while wearing braces it is essential that additional protective gear such as mouth guards be worn. Proper care of your braces and willingness to avoid high impact activities will ensure successful orthodontic treatment with minimal setbacks.

Certain Types of Weightlifting

Certain types of lifting should be avoided, because they could negatively affect the results of your orthodontic treatment. Exercising with orthodontic braces should involve activities that do not require pulling, pushing or slamming movements, as this could result in damage to the braces and cause misalignment.

It is important to avoid heavy lifting when exercising with braces. Though weightlifting can be beneficial for increasing strength and muscle tone, it puts a tremendous amount of stress on the braces. In particular, avoid exercises that involve jerking motions such as deadlifts and power cleans. These types of exercises can cause substantial damage to the braces, which may lead to more severe anatomical issues further down the line. Additionally, these types of motions can cause pain or discomfort both in terms of the braces being pulled on your teeth as well as increase interference from soft tissues such as lips or cheeks being pinched between metal components.

Other types of weightlifting should also be avoided when performing a workout with brace, including Olympic lifts (such as snatch and clean-and-jerk). Additionally, any type of exercise you would do while holding a barbell or handle bar should be replaced by using hand weights instead. If using hand weights isn’t an option for you, then consider doing solely bodyweight exercises; everything from squats and lunges to push-ups and planks can provide an effective full-body workout!

What You Can Do

Having braces can make it feel like you have your movement restricted, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t stay fit. There are actually a variety of exercises you can do with braces that don’t require any equipment, so you’re free to get moving at any time. Let’s take a look at some of the options you have when it comes to working out with braces.

Low-Impact Cardio

Low-impact cardio exercises such as walking, light jogging, swimming, and biking are encouraged for those with braces. While these activities are more gentle and do not involve as rigorous jumping or running as higher impact exercises, you should still be sure to warm up your muscles by doing some light stretching prior to starting. Furthermore, it is important to wear the appropriate clothing and shoes that offer support for your feet and ankles during any exercise activity that you perform. Additionally, if you plan on doing any activities such as biking that require changes in speed or elevation be sure to use extra caution when shifting the gears on your bike in order to prevent any potential accidents while participating in the activity. Lastly, it is important to drink plenty of water throughout exercise activities with braces in order to keep your body hydrated and energized during the workout.

Stretching and Strengthening Exercises

If you’re wearing braces and want to stay active, there are several stretching and strengthening exercises you can do. These types of movements can help to protect your teeth, reduce discomfort, and reduce the length of time your braces are on. It is important to take note of any inflammation or soreness that may occur as braces put pressure on certain areas. Strive for a balance between challenging yourself and taking care not to overstrain.

Stretching exercises:
– neck rolls
– shoulder rolls
– lateral pulls
– arm lifts
– static stretching

Strengthening exercises:
– Leg lifts
– Core work (yoga poses such as Warrior II pose)
– Wall presses (push against a wall with your arms outstretched)
– Resistance bands (pull them in various directions, like side leg lifts)

In general, choose low impact activities such as walking, cycling and swimming during this period. Activities such as running may be too taxing for the mouth area while wearing braces; however, walking can still be beneficial as it will support your overall health and well being while helping you stay active.


Swimming is a low-impact way to stay active while you are wearing braces. Intensive workouts involving heavy lifting, contact sports or jumping should be avoided as these activities can result in pain or damage the braces. Activities such as tennis, running and track can also be performed while wearing braces but should be done so with caution.

When swimming with braces, it is important to be aware of some key considerations:

– If a strap or headgear on the appliance is used for pressure purposes, it may need to be removed before entering the water. Be sure to check with your orthodontist when necesssary adjustments.
– Swimming in a pool of salt water increases the risk of corrosion from the salt, so it’s best to stick with freshwater pools.
– Choose an activity that will not put an excessive amount of strain on your appliance. Avoid breaststrokes and butterfly strokes which involve flipping your entire body headfirst into the water repeatedly as this could cause injury or damage the braces.
– Swimming should provide gentle movement activity; if you feel any discomfort or pain while exercising in the pool, adjust your activity level accordingly to prevent injury -overworking can place more stress on joints and teeth than might otherwise occur without an appliance present.


In conclusion, you can absolutely do a workout with braces, but there are important considerations to keep in mind. Make sure that you carefully follow your orthodontist’s instructions and use protective gear like mouth guards, pads and braces covers to protect your braces from damage caused by exercise. Additionally, it is important that you take appropriate recovery time after each exercise and inform your orthodontist of any pain or soreness. With the right precautions in place and support from a qualified orthodontic professional, you can safely and effectively work out while wearing braces!

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