Can You Workout After Getting a Tattoo?

It’s important to know how to take care of your new tattoo, and that includes understanding the risks of working out with a new tattoo.

Tattoo Aftercare

If you want to get the best results from your tattoo and make sure it heals correctly and looks its best, it’s important that you follow proper tattoo aftercare. This includes avoiding certain activities that could affect the healing process, such as working out. Working out should be avoided for at least the first few days after getting a tattoo, but how long should you wait before going back to the gym? Let’s take a look.

Understand the healing process

Successful healing of your tattoo, resulting in a bright and vibrant masterpiece, depends on proper care. After your tattoo is finished and the bandage is removed, you will want to take steps entrusted by your artist for aftercare of the area. Proper care should begin immediately following treatment and followed throughout the entire healing process to ensure it is done correctly.

Particularly important is your understanding of the three-phase healing process – inflammation, proliferation, and remodeling – which occurs when a wound such as a tattoo heals in the body.

Inflammation stage: This starts right after getting the tattoo and lasts around three days. During this stage of the healing process you may experience some minor discomfort including redness, raised skin temperature in and around the area, tenderness to touch, swelling & bruising.

Proliferation stage: During this stage that can last up to three weeks they body has begun knitting together by producing brand new collagen/scar tissue specific to tattoos as well as some minor inflammation. Whatever color was injected into your skin will become visible during this stage because water retention begins to reduce but can still be slightly swollen during this period too.

Remodeling stage: This stage starts at about 3 weeks post-tattooing. The tissue begins its restructuring process creating an even surface for permanent ink placement along with natural anti-microbial agents to expel any problems from within itself over time resulting in a durable & beautiful piece! However it may be necessary to keep up maintenance & care until all signs of inflammation have ceased completely which could take up several months depending on size/placement/vibe vibemometerics of each individual’s immune system response speed etc etc.. To be sure please check with your tattoo artist before engaging in activities such as exercise or swimming that involve putting pressure or moisture on newly inked skin patches or areas surrounding them such as where clothes or jewelry might rub against them while moving around!

Follow aftercare instructions

It is important to take proper aftercare of your tattoo to ensure it heals properly and lasts the test of time. After getting a tattoo, you should follow instructions from your tattoo artist on how to best care for your new body art.

These guidelines will likely include washing your tattoo twice daily with a gentle, fragrance-free soap and patting it dry with a clean towel or paper towel. You will also need to apply ointment (or other recommended aftercare product) two to three times a day until the area forms a protective layer. The ointment should be applied in thin layers and keep it minimal – you don’t want too much on the skin, as this can cause irritation or infections.

You should leave your bandage or dressing on for at least several hours after receiving the tattoo so that the area can heal more quickly. If you need to shower during that time, make sure it’s not too hot (as overly heated water may irritate the skin) and pat yourself dry with a soft towel afterwards. It can also help to use lukewarm saltwater wipes throughout the healing process, which can relieve itching and reduce swelling at the same time.

Finally, most artists advise against any physical activity – including swimming or working out – while your new ink is still healing in order to avoid further strains on the skin and possible infections due to sweat buildup. It’s best practice wait until all scabbing has faded away before getting back into vigorous activities like going for runs or engaging in contact sports, as these could potentially damage your work before it fully heals.

Know when to start working out

After getting a new tattoo, it is important to monitor the healing process in order to maximize the life of your tattoo. Depending on where you got the tattoo and how large an area it covers, it may take as little as three days or as long as two weeks for your skin to heal. During this time, you should avoid any activities that cause excess sweating or otherwise irritate the area. This means avoiding workout routines where you could potentially chafe against fresh ink or get the area too wet with perspiration.

When considering when to start working out after getting a new tattoo, always err on the side of caution. As soon as you’re sure that your skin has healed thoroughly and any scabs have been removed, it’s safe to begin exercising again. You should still be mindful of your new ink though and take steps to keep it clean and dry during workouts. Avoid any vigorous contact sports or intense weight training until your skin has completely healed — usually around 4-6 weeks after getting inked. Additionally, make sure that you wear loose fitting clothing while working out, only use mild soap and body wash when showering post-exercise and never expose your healing tattoo to direct sunlight.

By following these simple guidelines, you can ensure that your newly inked artwork looks just as vibrant when you hit the gym as it did when it was newly applied!

Types of Workouts

After getting a tattoo there are specific types of workouts you can do and exercises you should avoid. Depending on the location of your tattoo, you may need to take extra precautions when it comes to the types of workouts you choose. For example, if your tattoo is on an arm or leg, you will want to avoid any activities that involve extreme stretching or lifting of that particular body part. Let’s take a look at what types of workouts are safe to do after getting a tattoo.

Low impact workouts

Low impact workouts are a great way to get back into exercising following a tattoo session. As your tattoo heals, you want to find ways to stay active without irritating the skin and this is where low impact exercises can really benefit you. Low impact workouts typically involve slower, more controlled movements which will decrease stress and strain on your body, while still helping you stay fit and healthy. Following are some examples of low impact exercises:
-Yoga: Not only does yoga increase flexibility, but it also helps relieve stress and boost overall well-being. This can be especially beneficial if the area being tattooed was an old scar or injury.
-Swimming: Great for all ages as it is safe on joints as well as promoting strength and cardiovascular health.
-Pilates: Pilates is useful in building core strength which can be helpful for those who practice high intensity sports or activities such as martial arts or jogging.
-Tai Chi: A gentle form of noncompetitive martial arts which promotes physical conditioning, balance, flexibility and relaxation .
-Walking/Hiking: Both require little equipment yet promote great fitness. Walking/hiking can be done almost anywhere at any time of day with minimal risk of injury .

High intensity workouts

High intensity workouts may involve exercises such as fast running, jump rope, kettlebell training and interval or circuit training. These workouts generally involve doing a series of different exercises in a set amount of time with little to no rest between sets. High intensity workouts are ideal for weight loss and muscle toning, but may not be the best option right after getting a tattoo.

The reason these types of exercises are not recommended is because your body will be more sensitive to external factors during the healing process. Engaging in intense exercise can cause increased sweating which can lead to increased discomfort and even further irritation of the skin around your new tattoo. Therefore, it would be wise to wait until your skin has had sufficient time to heal before engaging in high intensity exercise.

If you do decide to exercise during the recovery period after receiving a tattoo, opt for lower impact forms of exercise such as yoga or Pilates. These activities will allow you to stay active while minimizing any potential risks associated with irritating the newly tattooed skin. These types of activities also usually require less intense exertion which allows you to have more control over your body temperature and level of perspiration during an exercise session which is essential for proper healing post-tattoo!

Bodyweight exercises

Bodyweight exercises are a great way to stay in shape without the need for any special equipment. This type of exercise utilizes only your own body weight as a form of resistance and can be done from the comfort of your home or outside in nature. These exercises can be arranged into different workout routines for any fitness level, from beginner to advanced. Common bodyweight exercises include push-ups, pull-ups, squats, tricep dips and sit-ups.

These types of workouts provide multiple benefits: they help build strength and muscle tone; help improve flexibility; increase coordination and balance; provide cardiovascular health benefits; are easy to progress over time by changing the number of reps or increasing intensity; and most importantly they require no additional equipment – just yourself!

Bodyweight exercises can also serve as a great warm up prior to any other type of exercise or sports activity such as running, swimming or yoga. Additionally, they offer numerous progressions and variations that could keep even the most experienced gym goer challenged and motivated while helping them reach their fitness goals safely. With this type of workout you can also easily adjust the difficulty level depending on how much physical effort you want to put in – making it ideal for people who are looking for some high intensity interval training (HIIT) in between sessions lifting weights at the gym.


There are many factors to consider when it comes to working out after getting a tattoo. The age of the tattoo, location of the tattoo, and the type of workout you are doing are all important factors to consider. Depending on what type of workout you are doing, it may be wise to wait a certain amount of time before starting your workout routine. Let’s look at some of the considerations you should keep in mind when deciding if you should work out after getting a tattoo.

Avoid activities that cause excessive sweating

If you are planning to exercise after getting a new tattoo, there are some considerations to take into account before and during your workout. Because tattoos are essentially open wounds for the first few weeks, it’s important to do everything you can to protect the area and allow your skin time to heal. Excessive sweating can cause bacteria, dirt, and other impurities to enter the wound and increase the risk of infection. It is also important not to exceed normal activity levels while healing or you could risk infection or damage that could affect the image or healing process.

Before deciding on an exercise routine after getting a tattoo, talk with your tattoo artist or doctor about recommendations for activities that will not strain the area too much. To reduce your risk of infection, it is necessary to avoid activities that cause excessive sweating, such as running long distances, hot yoga classes with heated rooms and more strenuous High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workouts like CrossFit or weightlifting sessions. Instead opt for gentler activities such as walking, light jogging, swimming in saltwater pools or lakes (not chlorine pools), stretching and yoga poses designed for pregnancy that involve gentle movements in order to ensure proper healing of the area covered by a tattoo.

Wear loose-fitting clothing

Whether you’re just leaving the tattoo studio, or if it’s been a few days or weeks since getting inked, one of the most important considerations for exercising after getting a tattoo is wearing loose-fitting clothing. Make sure the clothing is not so tight that it rubs against your new tattoo, especially if it’s still tender. Athletic wear made with breathable fabrics like cotton and spandex is often a good choice because they generally provide a snug fit without compromising freedom of movement. Wearing looser clothing will also help your tattoo heal sooner by allowing more air to get to the area so that its natural healing process can take place more quickly.

Apply sunscreen

After getting a new tattoo, it is important to protect it from any type of sun exposure. This includes UV radiation from the sun, but also other light sources such as tanning beds or lamps. While it is possible to continue workouts after getting a tattoo, it is essential to cover any fresh ink when heading outdoors for exercise or other activities that may cause sunburn or skin damage. The best way to do this is by applying liberal amounts of sunscreen with an SPF rating between 30 and 50 on the area around and directly over the tattoo at least 15 minutes before heading out into the sun. Make sure to reapply sunscreen regularly while outdoors, as well as afterwards to ensure maximum sun protection given that sweat can diminish the sunscreen’s effectiveness.


When it comes to getting a tattoo and then working out afterwards, a few risks are involved. Firstly, it’s important to understand that a tattoo is an open wound, so your skin needs time to heal. Working out too soon after getting a tattoo can increase the risk of infection and decrease your body’s ability to heal. There are also risks to consider when it comes to the type of exercise you’re doing after getting a tattoo. Let’s take a closer look.


Infection is a risk when you get a tattoo, just as it is with any other medical procedure. If basic safety precautions are not taken, serious infections could potentially arise from the use of contaminated needles or ink. The best way to prevent infection is to ensure that the artist holds themselves and their equipment to the highest hygiene standards. It is also important for you as the customer to make sure you are taking all the necessary steps for a successful and healthy healing process once your tattoo is finished.

The period immediately after getting a tattoo is when your body needs to focus its energy on healing the wound and forming scar tissue, which is why physical activities should be avoided during this time. When you start working out after getting a tattoo, it can place extra strain on these processes while they’re still in an active state. Therefore, it’s important that adequate time passes after your session so that your body has had enough time to heal and reduce the risk of infection before engaging in any vigorous physical activity.


One of the most common risks associated with working out after getting a tattoo is irritation. Since the area of the tattoo is still healing, any movement from exercise can cause friction against clothing or other surfaces. This can lead to increased inflammation and redness, as well as itching or burning at the location. It’s important to be mindful about how you handle your skin in order to reduce irritation and avoid infection. For example, if possible, wear loose-fitting clothing when exercising, and opt for cotton rather than synthetic fabrics. Make sure to keep your tattoo clean and avoid exposing it to sun or dirt until it has completely healed. If you feel any discomfort or pain while exercising, cease the activity immediately and contact your doctor if symptoms persist.

Allergic reaction

When getting a tattoo, there are a lot of factors you should consider. Certain types of ink can cause an allergic reaction, some may be permanent while others may dissipate after a few weeks or months. Ink ingredients can vary from artist to artist and if you’re allergic to any pigment, it’s important to disclose this before getting a tattoo. An allergic reaction can cause redness, swelling and irritation at the site of the tattoo. In extreme cases it can result in infection, scarring or loss of pigmentation. Additionally, before you work out at the gym or engage in physical activity with your new ink, be sure to contact your physician for advice about any potential risks that could arise from sweat contact with the area.


Overall, it is important to listen to your body and be aware of how it is feeling when determining if it is safe to workout after getting a tattoo. It is important to wait until your tattoo is completely healed before returning to your normal exercise routine. If you experience any pain or discomfort while working out, it is best to stop immediately and speak with your doctor.

Listen to your body

It is ultimately important to listen to your body and make the best decision for yourself. Treat the tattoo area like any injury or wound; take it easy until it heals. If you feel pain, stop immediately and speak with your tattooist or doctor if necessary. As a general rule, four days of rest and healing is always recommended before returning to your normal workout routine after getting a tattoo. However, everyone’s body will respond differently to the process of getting a tattoo so remain mindful of how it is feeling during and after the session, as well as during recovery. Give yourself time to heal properly; avoid strenuous activity that could aggravate your skin, potentially exposing it to excess bacteria which may cause infection. Make use of other alternative forms of exercise such as swimming, stretching and yoga that can be beneficial for healing without putting too much strain on your body.

Be mindful of your tattoo’s healing process

When you’ve finished your tattoo session and the artist has dressed the area, they will likely stipulate that you need to keep the area clean and dry while it heals. This healing process usually takes around two weeks depending on the size of your tattoo and where it is situated, but if you treat it properly during this time, then it can help ensure its longevity.

Depending on where your tattoo is located, consider avoiding more strenuous workouts for a period of time until your tattoo has had a chance to heal fully. Additionally, think about how hard or frequent the impact would be on the area of your new tattoo – sessions like running or jogging may be too much for some tattoos in their initial healing stages. Listen to your body and adjust accordingly — if something hurts too much, give yourself a rest day from that particular activity.

In most cases after sufficient healing time (around two weeks) light exercise activities like yoga can still pose no risks for most tattoos; however, more strenuous activities should be monitored carefully to avoid irritation or infection in areas with fresh ink. If you do decide to sweat at this stage ensure that you cleanse thoroughly with an antibacterial soap after working out and be extra careful when sliding clothes over tattoos as layers of bacteria can reside in fabric fibers which may irritate freshly healed skin.

Consult a doctor if needed

Depending on the size and location of your tattoo, you may need to take special precautions before working out. It is important that you seek medical advice from your doctor, who can advise whether exercise or strain can cause further damage to the tattoo, as well as provide advice on any remedies to accelerate healing time.

Although it may seem counterintuitive, doing moderate exercise in the week following getting a tattoo can actually speed up the healing process and reduce discomfort. However, if you experience severe pain, swelling or general discomfort while working out, stop immediately and consult with a doctor right away.

When starting back into physical activity after getting a new tattoo, always start slowly and gradually increase intensity over time. Avoid taking part in activities that require vigorous movement such as jumping and running until completely healed. Listen to your body carefully and practice proper injury prevention techniques; when in doubt, consult with a health care professional before resuming regular activity levels.

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