Pregnant women need a moderate amount of aerobic exercise every week to help reduce the discomfort many women experience during pregnancy, manage stress, ease back pain and even constipation. Many women are afraid to continue exercising when they find out about their bundle of joy, but it doesn’t have to be scary and can even benefit women who have had little to no exercise before getting pregnant.
Carry on reading to learn about the right exercises for pregnant moms to learn about what kinds of exercises are safe for you and your baby during this wondrous experience.
Ready to Begin?
Research shows that a minimum of 2.5 hours of moderate-intensity exercise per week is ideal for women during pregnancy. Specifically, aerobic exercises such as taking a brisk walk can work wonders in improving breathing and heart function. Even breaking this up into 10-minute sessions three times a day will give the same effect as a full half an hour.
Swimming has long been a popular choice of fitness for pregnant women as the water supports the weight of your baby while keeping your heart working. Yoga and Pilates have both been shown to be quite beneficial for women with back pain and emotional stress, however it is important to know the types of poses to avoid.
Those who are looking to stick to a similar training regime as before can do exercises such as the Pliè, plank, curl and lift and arm rows.
When Exercise is Not the Right Fit
For some women, pregnancy can aggravate conditions or preexisting illnesses. If you have any of the following symptoms during your pregnancy, you need to first consult a healthcare practitioner for advice. Preterm labor occurs in the last few weeks of pregnancy, and vigorous exercise can result in bleeding or early water breaks. Women who are expecting twins should not partake in heavy exercise routines, as the risk of going into preterm labor increases significantly. Doctors may suggest that you continue to do some light walking, yoga, or swimming if you are pregnant with twins.
If you are diagnosed with hypertension or preeclampsia, you should not be exercising at all. With this condition the placenta is situated over the entire cervix, causing discomfort and pain, but also leads to other bleeding disorders.
Out of the Question Exercises
There are a few routines that doctors recommend that pregnant women stay away from altogether. These include any movement that jerks or bounces, such as biking, horseback riding and skating. Sports in which there is a chance of being hit in the stomach are a logical no-no, as areexercises where you have to lie flat on your back.
There are some cautionary signs to look out for if you are worried that your exercise routine may be harming your body and your baby. Chest pain, trouble breathing, headaches, muscle weakness or pain and swelling, regular painful contractions that are not in line with labor, and most importantly, if you cannot feel your baby moving.
The bottom line is: do your research and don’t take on any new exercise routine without consulting your doctor. For women who would like to hear about other pregnant women’s experiences, Moms Into Fitness is a wonderful website filled with resources and exercise videos.
Do you have any advice to add? Let us know in the comments.