What Is The Difference Between A Birthing Ball & Exercise Ball

what is the difference between a birthing ball and exercise ball

In order to fully understand the difference between a birthing ball and an exercise ball, it is important to understand the manufactured purpose and design for each.

What is a Birthing Ball?

A birthing ball, also referred to as a labor ball or pregnancy ball is a plastic or vinyl inflatable ball that is typically 65 to 75 centimeters in diameter.  The size of the ball used is contingent upon the height of the woman using it.  Women 5’ 8” or shorter, are recommended to use the 65-centimeter ball, while women taller than 5’ 8” should use the 75-centimeter ball.  While using the ball, if the woman’s hips are lower than their knees, they should increase the size of their birth ball.

The Purpose of a Birthing Ball?

A birthing ball can be use throughout pregnancy, during labor, as well as postpartum.

Expectant mothers often use a pregnancy ball as early as their first trimester.  Throughout the pregnancy, the birth ball will help to maximize posture and stability, alleviate back pain, increase blood flow to the uterus and placenta, and prepare for an easier birthing process.

During labor, the birth ball will help properly position the baby for delivery, loosen the pelvic joints, and increase the pelvic outlet by up to 30 percent.

Post-delivery, the labor ball may also be used for postpartum fitness programs, maintain proper posture, and increase stability.

What is an Exercise Ball?

An exercise ball, also referred to as a balance ball, stability ball or yoga ball, can be found in sizes ranging from 45 to 75 centimeters.  Again, the size needed will be based on the height of the individual using the ball.  Like labor balls, exercise balls are also inflatable, and constructed of plastic or vinyl material.

The Purpose of an Exercise Ball

Exercise balls are used exclusively for boosting strength, stability and flexibility.  Often times these stability balls will be featured in various workout regiments emphasizing the use of this tool.

“Make Sure Your Birthing Ball Is Non-Slip & Bust Resistant”

What is the Difference?

At first glance, exercise balls and pregnancy balls look identical.  However, if you had one of each in front of you, you would likely be able to see and feel the difference.

Size Options

Exercise balls start as small as 45 centimeters in diameter, and increase up to 75 centimeters.  Pregnancy balls are typically offered in two sizes, 65 centimeters in diameter, and 75 centimeters.


Although both balls are inflatable, and manufactured with a vinyl or plastic material, pregnancy balls are often constructed using a thicker version of the material.  By using a stronger, thicker material, pregnancy balls often don’t have the inflation issues that come with traditional exercise balls.

Safety Features

Perhaps the most important differentiators between exercise balls and pregnancy balls are the safety features.

Birthing balls are manufactured with the safety and security of expecting mothers in mind.  These balls include an anti-slip feature, which keeps the ball secure, effectively preventing it from rolling out from under the user.  Additionally, the material used for pregnancy balls are manufactured not to burst if punctured.  This anti-burst feature will allow for a slow release of air through the puncture hole, instead of the material bursting, creating a sudden collapse of the ball.

Finding the Best Ball

Now that the key differentiators between a pregnancy ball and a standard exercise ball have been explained, expecting mothers are likely questioning which pregnancy ball is best.

Finding the best pregnancy ball can become a cumbersome task that moms-to-be don’t have time for.  There are different brands, materials, colors, features, sizes, and pricing to consider.

Now, let’s be honest – expecting moms don’t have time for that.  Why?  Because they’re already researching the best cribs, car seats, strollers, bouncers, gliders, and more.  The last thing they want to do is research yet another product.

To make it easier, here are a list of three key things mothers should consider before buying their pregnancy ball:

  • Size – What is your height?  If you’re 5’ 8” or shorter, purchase a 65-centimeter ball.  If you’re taller than 5’8”, buy the 75-centimeter ball.
  • Materials – Ensure what you’re purchasing is thicker than standard exercise balls.
  • Security features – Confirm the pregnancy ball has both non-slip and anti-burst features


By limiting it to these three factors, moms-to-be should not be too overwhelmed with the options.  However, to make it easier – keep reading.

The Birth Ball

The Birth Ball is the #1 selling pregnancy and labor ball sold.  And just like that, the choice was made easier!

The Birth Ball is unlike other labor balls which can be found on the market today.  The Birth Ball is constructed of an eco-friendly, 100% recyclable material, that is three times thicker than alternative pregnancy balls available.  In addition to the increased security of stronger materials, The Birth Ball also ensures the safety and security of mom-to-be and the baby with its non-slip and anti-burst features.

“My wife loved The Birth Ball and used it every step of the way until our son was born.  Then continued to use it after.  Great product!” – Colin Williamson – Dad

To ensure mom and baby’s safety, the makers of The Birth Ball also include non-slip socks to wear while using the product.  Normal socks reduce traction, contributing to over two million fall injuries occur every year.  The developers of The Birth Ball were concerned with mom and baby’s safety; therefore, they designed the product and socks specifically with safety as their primary priority.