Great Pregnancy Exercises
Pregnancy is an integral part which changes the entire courses of your daily routine. Many things which you took for granted will now bear a question mark, like your morning cup of coffee! However, just because you are pregnant does not mean you have to stop exercising. In fact, maintaining a regular fitness routine throughout your pregnancy can help you stay healthy and feel your best and provides stamina for the time of delivery. The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology recommends 30 minutes or more of moderate exercise per day unless you have a medical or pregnancy complication. Let us go through different pregnancy exercises which are suitable can help you stay fit and mobile, even on your low days.
Yoga is known for being extremely helpful for the expecting mothers and can be remedial for many pregnancy symptoms. The techniques and poses followed in the course of prenatal yoga emphasize on the flexibility and strength of a woman’s body to prepare her for the contractions and labor. Some of the primary benefits of practicing yoga include but is not limited to:
- Improve sleep
- Reduce stress and anxiety
- Increase the strength, flexibility, and endurance of muscles needed for childbirth
- Decrease lower back pain, nausea, carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms, headaches and shortness of breath
Walking is one of the easiest and safest pregnancy exercises which require minimal effort. It is easily adaptable to one's daily routine and takes no added preparation or classes and is extremely beneficial for the mom and baby. Walking is safe throughout the pregnancy period as long as you do not overdo it. Some of the benefits of brisk walking are:
- Works your heart and lungs
- Lowers risk of gestational diabetes
- Lowers risk of preeclampsia
- Increases the chances of normal delivery
- Relieves aches and discomforts
Aerobic exercises are intense and get your heart beating and blood pumping. Low-impact aerobics exercises which focus on maintaining fitness, rather than improving it, you can continue even when you are pregnant. Doing regular low-impact aerobic exercise which does not involve high kicks, jumps or leaps will help you to:
- Strengthen your heart and lungs
- Tone your muscles
- Ease pregnancy aches and pains
- Get a better night's sleep
Pilates is a physical exercise best suited for pregnancy as it strengthens your tummy, back and pelvic floor muscles without straining joints. Pilates targets the exact muscles and functions that can be a hurdle in your pregnancy and after birth. Doing regular pilates will help to:
- Strengthen your tummy muscles and pelvic floor
- Reduces back pain
- Helps with balance
- Takes the strain off your back and pelvis
- Relax and control your breathing
Weight training during pregnancy might sound intense however, a mom-to-be can really benefit from the same. If one maintains the safety standards and knows not to overdo it, one can benefit from weight training during pregnancy in following ways:
- Strengthens abdominal and back muscles
- Prevents lower back pain that's common during pregnancy.
- Builds stamina for labor and delivery.
- Helps women with gestational diabetes stay active.
Swimming is one of the best exercises during pregnancy as it is gentle on the joints and relieves swollen ankles. Also, you will feel light as a feather, no matter how big your bump is. As one of the safest forms of exercise for expectant moms, here are some of the benefits of swimming:
- It works on your large muscle groups.
- It's low impact and is gentle on your body.
- Relieves back strain from your growing belly.
- It helps with the swelling in your arms and legs.
Doing Kegel exercises like holding and quickly contract the pelvic floor muscle for 10 seconds each can really help your pelvic muscles. This will help support the pelvic organs like the uterus, bladder, and bowels and help you avoid hemorrhoids and leakage of urine later into the pregnancy. Kegels benefits the expecting mom by:
- Healing of perineal tissues
- Increase the strength of the pelvic floor muscles
- Help these muscles return to a healthy state
- Increase urinary control.
A series of moderate level exercises during pregnancy can help you combat some of the common discomforts of pregnancy such as backaches and fatigue. Physical activity can also prevent gestational diabetes, relieve stress, and build more stamina for the labor and delivery period. However, remember to consult your doctor before you do the exercises. Your ob-gyn can ask you to not do any exercises if you have any special complications or yours in a high-risk pregnancy.