How Much Does the Baby Move Towards the End of Pregnancy?

415204226_e9ed41e938_z
Image via Flickr/ JAKULL

The first time you feel your baby move is one of the most magical moments of pregnancy. Most first time moms begin to feel their baby kick sometime between weeks sixteen and twenty, and as their pregnancy progresses their baby’s kick usually become stronger and more defined. Towards the end of pregnancy, when the baby is big and cramped, many moms report that their babies seem less active. While it’s true that most movements may come in the form of swishes and shifts rather than the big kicks and jabs you’ve been accustomed to, your baby should keep on moving right up until delivery.

If you’re in your last trimester and haven’t felt your baby kick in a while, it’s usually because you’ve missed their more subtle movements. If you’re concerned, most doctors will recommend that you have a drink of juice or cold water, lay down on your side, and concentrate on feeling your little one move. Because they’re getting ready for life outside the womb, babies in the last trimester will often have defined periods of rest and activity. 

{ MORE: What is a Labor Cake? (And Should You Bake One?) }

While you usually don’t need to keep a formal log chart of your baby’s movements and activity, generally knowing when they are active and when they're resting can ease your mind if you haven’t felt them in a few minutes. If you ever have concerns about your baby’s activity level, or if they seem much quieter than usual, you should reach out to your doctor right away. While most babies tend to move at least ten times over a half hour period, most doctors won’t be concerned if you feel at least ten movements over a two-hour period.

Even though you may feel heavy and uncomfortable, and your baby’s gymnastics may be making you more than a little uncomfortable, do your best to enjoy the third-trimester movements. Take a video of your belly jumping around as your baby does, let your partner in on the fun by letting them guess along with you whether the part you see poking out is a hand or foot and, generally, do your best to savor the moment. In a few weeks, the little baby you see and feel squirming around in your belly will be squirming around in your arms and you just may miss the kicks and rolls you felt while they were growing inside you. 

{ MORE: Do You Need Pelvic Floor Therapy? }

How did you feel when you first felt your baby move?

What do you think?

How Much Does the Baby Move Towards the End of Pregnancy?

Julia Pelly has a master's degree in public health and works full time in the field of positive youth development. Julia loves hiking after work, swimming during the summer and taking long, cuddly afternoon naps with her two sons on the weekends. She is writing a memoir on pregnancy, motherhood, and sisterhood and lives in North Carolina, with her husband and two young boys. ... More

Tell us what you think!

×

Get a FREE Newborn Sleep Guide when you sign up for our newsletter

By joining the EverydayFamily.com community, you will have access to our active community of mothers just like you, interactive tools, sweepstakes, free baby offers and more! You will also receive customized newsletters tailored specifically to you and special offers directly in your inbox.By joining the EverydayFamily.com community, you will have access to our active community of mothers, interactive tools, sweepstakes, free baby offers, customized email newsletters tailored specifically to you and special offers directly in your inbox.

Due Date or Baby's Birth Date


By clicking the "Join Now" button you are agreeing to the terms of use and privacy policy.

Send this to a friend