How a Little Exercise Every Day During Your Pregnancy can Help You and Your Baby

June 21, 2021 3 min read

How a Little Exercise Every Day During Your Pregnancy can Help You and Your Baby

Pregnancy comes with a list of dos and don’ts. One of the most important “do” from the list is to be physically active. Except under certain conditions, it is generally advisable to stay active during pregnancy for your baby’s good health.

Of course, with morning sickness, growing body weight, and backache, it becomes difficult to feel energetic and motivated about exercises during pregnancy. But the fact is by exercising a little bit every day during pregnancy, you can alleviate most of your pregnancy-related problems and prevent complications due to excess weight during pregnancy. Staying active is also good for your baby’s health. Read on to learn more about it.

Benefits of Exercises during pregnancy:

A review of 86 published articles suggests that physical activity during pregnancy has several benefits on the mother’s as well as her baby’s health.According to a meta-analysis of 2000 women, moderate-intensity aerobics and strengthening/toning exercise for 3-4 days in a week during pregnancy (uncomplicated) reduce the risk of low birth weight babies or preterm births. 

Benefits on mother’s health:

  • Keeps you energetic and stress-free during pregnancy.
  • Builds stamina and prepares you better for labor.
  • Helps make your delivery easy.
  • Helps improve your posture during pregnancy.
  • Reduces common pregnancy discomforts, such as fatigue and backaches.
  • Prevents gestational diabetes (diabetes during pregnancy).
  • Prevents complications associated with excess weight during pregnancy and delivery.
  • Helps you lose weight faster post-delivery.

Benefits on Baby’s health:

Studies suggest that regular exercise by an expecting mom is beneficial for her baby’s heart health, brain development and prevents the risk of developing chronic disease in the child

How Much is Good?

According to the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology or ACOG, moderate exercise for 30 minutes or more a day for most days in a week is good during pregnancy, provided you don’t have any health or pregnancy complications

If you have been exercising regularly before pregnancy, you may continue the same workouts after discussing with your healthcare provider or obstetrician. If you are new to workouts, it is advisable to start slowly with a few easy exercises and gradually increase both activity and timings until you achieve the 30 minutes a day target.

Don’t engage in strenuous activity, do moderate exercises at your comfort.

Conditions When Exercises are Not Advisable:

A healthy and normal pregnancy requires you to exercise regularly. But if you have any health issues or pregnancy complications, it is better to discuss them with your obstetrician before starting an exercise program. She may advise you not to go for it orguide you on how to do it safely.

The following health conditions are generally a big NO to exercise:

  • Health conditions, such as heart disease, diabetes pre-eclampsia (BP developed during pregnancy), anemia, and asthma.
  • Pregnancy complications, such as low placenta, history of miscarriage, spotting or bleeding, history of early labor or premature births, and other complications.

Exercises You May Do Safely During Pregnancy:

Experts believe that the following exercises are safe during pregnancy:

  • Simple or brisk walks.
  • Water workouts and swimming.
  • Stationary bicycling (avoid riding a standard bicycle as it can be risky).
  • Prenatal yoga and Pilates for pregnant women (better under a trainer’s guidance).

Every woman has a different body and requirements, so discuss the activities you plan to start with your obstetrician or HCP.

Exercises You Should Avoid During Pregnancy:

Any activity where you have a risk of falling or hurting yourself or your baby is not advisable. Also, avoid activities that require you to stand still or lay flat on your back.

Avoid activities like bouncing, skiing, skydiving, horse riding, scuba diving, hot yoga, hot Pilates, vigorous aerobics, gymnastics, and activities that involve vigorous up and down movement.

Conclusion:

It requires extra discipline to stay active during pregnancy. But maintaining healthy pregnancy habits may go a long way in keeping you and your baby healthy.



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