According to the American Pregnancy Association, exercising during pregnancy helps alleviate pregnancy issues such as varicose veins, constipation, leg cramps, and hemorrhoids as it improves circulation. Also, you are less likely to gain excess weight, your mood will be improved, and exercises prepare you for childbirth. We discuss 5 exercises that are safe for each trimester.
Walking is one of the safest and best exercises for a pregnant woman. It does not require any equipment apart from supportive shoes, making it quite affordable. It is less risky to fall while walking, and a pregnant woman can easily control exertion levels by varying the pace, distance, or even climbing a hill.
If you were a runner before getting pregnant, chances are that you canthe still do it. However, you might need to adjust the schedule. Instead of the trails, you might want to run on smooth and flat routes to minimize the chances of falling. Do not over exert yourself and stop whenever you start experiencing joint pain or unusual cramping. If you are not a runner, you might want to wait until after delivery to take up running.
3. Weight training
Weight training is a perfect way of strengthening and toning your muscles. However, avoid exercises where you have to hold the weights over the tummy. Aim for moderate to low-intensity weight training sessions twice in a week. Use slow and controlled movements when lifting weights.
Yoga helps strengthen the body muscles, improve balance, and reduce pregnancy-related aches or pains. If you have been doing it, you will need to inform your instructor of the pregnancy so that they can adjust your sessions accordingly. Nonetheless, pregnant women should by no means engage in hot yoga as it could lead to premature labor or birth defects.
Swimming is an easy way of strengthening your muscle and maintaining cardiovascular health. There is no risk of falling while swimming, a factor that makes it safer than running. If you are a regular, you can maintain your normal swimming routine as long as your body is up to it.
Before commencing with your exercise plan, it would be ideal to consult your physician who will help you establish whether you have a healthy pregnancy. Some of the safety guidelines you should observe include:
- Warming up before workouts and stretching afterwards
- Wearing appropriate gear such as sturdy shoes, belly bands, a compression shirt, or any relevant gear
- Avoiding high-impact exercises or any activity that could result in a hard falls
- Monitoring the heart rate will help you keep up with a safe rhythm
Stop exercising should you feel dizzy or winded. Call your doctor immediately if you notice any bleeding or discharge.