5 Safe and Easy Exercises for Pregnant Women

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Pregnant Women doing yoga

Everyone pretty much knows that being active is good for you, but it’s particularly worthwhile when you are expecting. Routine exercises during your pregnancy can improve your heart health, provide you energy, reduce lower back pain, and most importantly help create a healthy baby. Before starting any physical activity, you should get definite clearance from your physician to make sure the activities you choose to do are 100% safe for you and your baby. If the doctor gives you permission it is recommended to get at least 30 minutes, 3 or 4 days a week. It is important to remember that you are not training for a fitness competition – you are staying healthy! Here are 5 safe and easy exercises we recommend for your pregnancy journey:

1. Swimming

Swimming is the perfect pregnancy workout. In the water there is less of a risk of you taking a stumble, falling on your tummy, or harming your baby. Exercising in water gives you a healthier series of motions that won’t put stress on your joints. Water has the ability to make you feel weightless at any month during your pregnancy. Some women have discovered that swimming can help alleviate nausea or puffy ankles. When selecting a stroke – pick one that feels comfortable and that doesn’t harm your neck, shoulders, or back muscles. The breaststroke is an ideal choice, as there is no need for you to rotate your torso or stomach. Don’t forget you are pregnant, so don’t jump in doing a cannonball in the water – enter safely!

2. Walking

Walking is perhaps the easiest exercise for anyone to achieve. You’ll get a cardiovascular workout minus putting too much impact on your knees and ankles. We suggest for you to walk on smooth surfaces- try to avoid potholes or other obstacles. Walking or not, your feet will swell up during your pregnancy. If you choose to walk it’s vital to wear supportive sneakers to try and keep your feet and ankles from extreme inflammation. The best part about walking is you don’t need a gym membership or workout equipment to complete this exercise.

3. Yoga

Yoga endorses tranquilly, mobility, focus, and meditation within a stress-free environment. All of these elements are excellent for the preparation of childbirth. There are yoga courses exclusively crafted for pregnant women to have safe stretches and poses for you and your baby. During a yoga session, its important to know your limitations with poses that could challenge your equilibrium, or by lying on your back, as your uterus gets heavier. We recommend avoiding hot yoga while you’re on your pregnancy journey. Hot yoga may trigger your heart to race or you can overheat.

4. Lifting Weights

Lifting weights will enhance your muscles bordered by your joints so there is less possibility of injury for you during pregnancy. However, you should lift half of the weight that you are originally used too and complete more repetitions to still achieve a beneficial workout. If you find yourself holding your breath for too long or breathing incorrectly, this may increase your blood pressure and decrease the blood flow to your baby. Always check with your doctor to see if you should adjust your weight training.

5. Kegel Exercises

Kegels are the best! Kegel exercises strengthen the muscles that support the bladder, uterus, and bowels, which are all significant for pregnancy and childbirth. Kegels also help develop the ability to relax and control the muscles for the delivery. You can even perform Kegels after childbirth to help with urinary control, improve pelvic floor muscles, and perineal recovery. The best part is, you can do Kegel exercises anytime and anyplace, so no one knows you’re doing them! For optimal results, it’s best to achieve 10 Kegel exercises a day.

Speak to an OB-GYN at Women First Health Center

Want to learn more about which exercise is safe for you and your baby? Contact Women First Health Center to talk to a professional and caring team member. We are here for all your questions and concerns about your pregnancy journey. Schedule an appointment in our West Orange, NJ office today!

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