While marathons and supercharged gym sessions may be out of the question, you shouldn’t stop physical activity entirely. Certain exercises during pregnancy are not only safe, but also essential to achieving optimal prenatal health. Staying active when you’re expecting can help alleviate back pain, protect your joints from wear and tear, improve sleep, prevent constipation and better prepare your body for the physical demands of labor.
The most important rule is to not do anything that puts your baby bump at risk for physical trauma. This includes contact sports or activities that carry a high risk of falling, such as downhill skiing, horseback riding, tennis, football, soccer and basketball. When walking or jogging, avoid rocky or uneven terrain. You should also avoid working out in extremely hot weather. Since you’re going to be pregnant for at least three seasons, you will likely have to adjust your exercise routine as the weather changes. And remember, stay hydrated!
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends the following pregnancy-safe exercises unless otherwise advised by your physician:
Weight training can also be a safe form of prenatal exercise. However, the ACOG does not recommend any form of exercise that requires women to lie in the supine position (on their backs) after the first trimester. This includes bench presses and similar free-weight exercises.
Consult with your doctor before starting any new exercise regimen.
October 16, 2017
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