Regular exercises for pregnant women can be extremely beneficial for the well being of both, the mother and her child. Working out at least 30 minutes every day reduces the chances of obesity, the need for any pain relief medication, or excessive weight gain during pregnancy.
A fair amount of physical activity every day will help keep your mind and body healthy and will provide you with good energy and make your body ready for labor and birth. It is often advised by the experts that pregnant women take part in walking or jogging regularly to maintain sound health. If, exercising 30 minutes straight seems overwhelming to you, break up the time into 15 minutes each in the morning and evening.
Moreover, here are some exercises for pregnant women that provide very little risk to injury and can be safely followed till their delivery.
A good 15 minutes of walk around the neighborhood in the morning or evening can be very effective for you during your period of pregnancy. Walking gives you excellent cardiovascular exercise without straining your muscles and ankles. If you are new to exercising, this can be a really good starting point.
Remember not to strain yourself too much and wear proper footwear during walking. Avoid heels and walking on undulating surfaces.
Yoga can be an excellent exercise for pregnant women as it helps reduce stress and increases body flexibility. But, remember to avoid poses that make you lie flat on your belly.
One of the major benefits of doing yoga during pregnancy is that it stimulates blood circulation in the body and strengthen your muscles.
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Swimming or walking in water is considered to be safe during pregnancy. Water reduces pressure from the joints due to excessive body weight and helps you to move and exercise with a lot more ease.
It helps you strengthen the muscles of your legs and buttocks. Make sure you avoid diving, jumping, or choosing strokes that might hurt your back, neck, or shoulder muscles. Avoid walking at the slippery pool sides.
4. Belly Breathing
This one serves more as a meditative exercise that helps your body to relax and calm down in between contractions.
Simply, sit in a relaxed position and take deep breaths. This ensures a good amount of oxygen supply into your body and helps in blood circulation.
5. Incline Push-ups
You can include incline push-ups in your second trimester exercising routine. It targets the chest, shoulders, and triceps which helps moms-to-be gain stability strength and build a strong core.
To perform an incline push-up, stand facing a wall or a ledge with your hands shoulder-width apart. Incline against the wall and step your body back in a standing plank position. Now, bend your arms to lower your chest towards the wall and then return to your original position. Repeat this process 10-15 times.
6. Weight Training Exercises
A little bit of stretching and weight training exercises will bring no harm to your body. This exercise for pregnant women help build endurance and reduces back pain. It also prevents your body from gaining excessive weight during the course of your pregnancy.
Squatting helps your body get prepared for labor. This can be a very good exercise for pregnant women in their first trimester. There are several types of squats that you can perform during your pregnancy that helps build resistance in your abdominal muscles and strengthen your pelvic floor muscles as these tend to become weak during pregnancy.
Your joints get more flexible at this time, so always remember not to over-do yourself and go with your regular set of motions.
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8. Stationary cycling
Stationary cycling is a very good exercise for women who loves biking. Since, you can’t opt for any adventurous outdoor exercises like hiking, biking, or downhill-skiing, limit yourself to a safe stationary cycling routine.
Stationary cycling reduces the risk of you falling down or cycling in undulating terrains. This gets your heart rate up and reduces pressure in your pelvis and joints.
9. Kegel Exercises
Kegel exercises for pregnant women help to strengthen muscles in their back, abdomen, pelvis, and abs. It improves bladder control and in turn helps during labor and in bowel movements.
To perform Kegel exercises squeeze your muscles in your vagina like you would do while stopping the flow of gas or urine. You can do this exercise while sitting, standing, or lying down on the floor. Try practising it in 2-3 sets every day
10. Stretching Exercises
Stretching exercises like a hamstring stretch, leg lifts, arm and triceps stretching help you get relief from joint pain in lower parts of the body.
Incorporating some stretching exercises within your daily workout routine can be very beneficial as it helps you to fight off all the pregnancy symptoms like nausea, breathlessness, feeling off-balance, or muscle fatigue.
Moreover, exercising daily during pregnancy can improve the health of both mom-to-be and the child. However, there are certain things that you must consider while exercising.
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Things to keep in mind...
Don’t over exercise, as that can be very dangerous and can cause some unwanted troubles.
Wear proper foot-wear while exercising or walking or jogging. Absolutely stay away from heels and wear sneakers or flats.
Avoid exercises that make you lie down flat for a long period of time.
Choose wise clothing while exercising. Wear loose fitted clothes, that allow air to pass through and supportive bra or belly band.
Drink plenty of water before and after exercising.
Avoid walking on undulating surfaces or slippery roads.
Disclaimer: All the exercises mentioned above are general exercises for pregnant women that can be followed safely. However, it is highly recommended that you take an expert opinion from your gynaecologist about which exercises will be good for you and which won’t be, or should you even exercise at all during pregnancy.
Here are some instances where the doctors might restrict you from doing exercises during pregnancy. If...
You have a medical problem like asthma, Type-I diabetes, heart disease.
You have a history or a probability of pregnancy loss.
You have a weak cervix.
You have vaginal bleeding or spotting.
Overall, make a note of consulting your doctor before performing any exercises. As soon as you get a green light from your doctor, make sure you stay active regularly and exercise for the recommended time every day.
Let us know your pregnancy workout routine or share with us any other useful tips about exercises for pregnant women.
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Sudiptaa Sen - I am a writer of this and that, learning to make use of my creativity and passion. I have an interest in a lot of things including food, lifestyle, self-care, and is a travel enthusiast who loves to enjoy life from various perspectives and lives to tell the tale.