EXERCISE IN PREGNANCY
The more active and fit you are during pregnancy, the easier it will be for you to adapt to your changing shape and weight gain. It will also help you to cope with labour and get back into shape after the birth.
Keep up your normal daily physical activity or exercise (sport, running, yoga, dancing, or even walking to the shops and back) for as long as you feel comfortable.
Exercise is not dangerous for your baby – there is some evidence that active women are less likely to experience problems in later pregnancy and labour.
|EXERCISE DURING AND AFTER PREGNANCY|
|Exercise during Pregnancy
Exercise is a boon for you and your baby not only during pregnancy but after delivery also. Work out can help you make feel better by boosting energy level, relieve backaches, reduce constipation, increases the blood flow to skin which will make your face glow, prepare mother’s body for birth and also helps to re-shape body as like it was before pregnancy quickly.
During pregnancy exercising will keep a check on fat weight gain thus lowering the complications in pregnancy. The exercise regime depends on whether the pregnancy is normal or complicated. Moderate exercise for 150 minutes each week is recommended for healthy women. But always look for the advice from your doctor before you continue your old exercise routine or begin a new one while you’re pregnant.
Listen to your body. Your energy level may also vary greatly with each passing day. As your baby grows it puts pressure on your lungs and you’ll have difficulty in breathing when you exercise. If your body starts feeling fatigue, dizziness, heart palpitations, shortness of breath or pain in your back or pelvis discontinue exercising.
Exercises to Try
Exercise after Delivery
Exercises to Try
EXERCISE TIPS FOR PREGNANCY
- Don’t exhaust yourself.
- Remember that exercise doesn’t have to be strenuous to be beneficial.
- always warm up before exercising, and cool down afterwards
- Try to keep active on a daily basis: half an hour of walking each day can be enough, but if you can’t manage that, any amount is better than nothing
- Drink plenty of water and other fluids
- If you go to exercise classes, make sure your teacher is properly qualified, and knows that you’re pregnant as well as how many weeks pregnant you are
- You might like to try swimming because the water will support your increased weight.
EXERCISES TO AVOID IN PREGNANCY
- Don’t lie flat on your back for prolonged periods, particularly after 16 weeks, because the weight of your bump presses on the main blood vessel bringing blood back to your heart and this can make you feel faint
- Don’t take part in contact sports where there’s a risk of being hit, such as kickboxing, judo or squash
EXERCISES FOR A FITTER PREGNANCY
Try to fit the exercises listed below into your daily routine. They will strengthen your muscles so that you can carry the extra weight of pregnancy. They’ll also make your joints stronger, improve circulation, ease backache, and generally help you feel well.
As your baby gets bigger, you may find that the hollow in your lower back increases and this can give you backache. These exercises strengthen stomach (abdominal) muscles and may ease backache-
- Start in a box position (on all fours) with knees under hips, hands under shoulders, with fingers facing forward and abdominals lifted to keep your back straight
- Pull in your stomach muscles and raise your back up towards the ceiling, curling the trunk and allowing your head to relax gently forward. Don’t let your elbows lock
- Hold for a few seconds then slowly return to the box position
- Take care not to hollow your back: it should always return to a straight/neutral position
- Do this slowly and rhythmically 10 times, making your muscles work hard and moving your back carefully
- Only move your back as far as you can comfortably
PELVIC TILT EXERCISES
- stand with your shoulders and bottom against a wall
- keep your knees soft
- pull your tummy button towards your spine, so that your back flattens against the wall: hold for four seconds and release
- repeat up to 10 times
PELVIC FLOOR EXERCISES
Pelvic floor exercises help to strengthen the muscles of the pelvic floor, which come under great strain in pregnancy and childbirth. The pelvic floor consists of layers of muscles that stretch like a supportive hammock from the pubic bone (in front) to the end of the backbone.
If your pelvic floor muscles are weak, you may find that you leak urine when you cough, sneeze or strain. This is quite common and you needn’t feel embarrassed. It’s known as stress incontinence and it can continue after pregnancy.
You can strengthen the muscles by doing pelvic floor exercises. This helps to reduce or avoid stress incontinence after pregnancy. All pregnant women should do pelvic floor exercises, even if you’re young and not suffering from stress incontinence now.
How to do pelvic floor exercises:
- Close up your anus as if you’re trying to prevent a bowel movement
- At the same time, draw in your vagina as if you’re gripping a tampon, and your urethra as if to stop the flow of urine
- At first, do this exercise quickly, tightening and releasing the muscles immediately
Then do it slowly, holding the contractions for as long as you can before you relax: try to count to 10
- Try to do three sets of eight squeezes every day: to help you remember, you could do a set at each meal