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Pregnancy Exercises

Exercise Tips During Pregnancy

Aching back, swollen ankles and insomnia-sounds familiar? In other words, you’re likely to be pregnant!  Is there anything you can do to minimise these uncomfortable symptoms of pregnancy? Turns out, there is exercise. Maintaining a regular exercise routine during the course of your pregnancy can help you stay hale and hearty.

Working out while you’re pregnant provides a lot of health benefits — a mood booster, a diminution in many pregnancies-related uncomfortable symptoms and a speedier postpartum recovery. Some studies have presented that exercise may even cut down a woman’s risk of complications, like preeclampsia and gestational diabetes, significantly

It doesn’t matter if you were an ironwoman or lazybones until now. You can still benefit from getting some exercise during pregnancy. It’s safe, as long as you get the go-ahead from your doctor before hitting any new or familiar workout routine and abide by a few pregnancy-specific revisions.

Is exercise safe during pregnancy?

Overall and in the majority of the cases, exercise is safe during the duration of pregnancy. You should check with your doctor before starting any exercise routine.

Usually, as a rule, if you were physically active before your pregnancy, it can be said that it is safe to remain active during pregnancy. Chances are that your doctor will tell you to continue being active, as long as you are comfortable and there are no former or new health conditions signifying otherwise.

What Are the Benefits of Exercising During Pregnancy?

Undoubtedly, exercise is beneficial for both you and your baby, barring any complications

It can help you:

  • Feel better: Exercise releases endorphins which make you feel better, boost your energy levels and improve your sense of control. Exercising in the right manner can:
    • relieve backaches and improve your posture by toning muscles in your back, butt, and thighs and providing increased strength and balance
    • ease constipation by accelerating bowel movement
    • prevent wear and tear of your joints by stimulating the lubricating fluid in your joints
    • releasing the stress and anxiety, which in turn regulates your sleeping patterns
  • Look better: Exercise increases the blood circulation to your skin, giving you a healthy pregnancy glow.
  • Prepare you and your body for birth: Strong muscles and a fit heart can aid labor and delivery.
  • Regain your pre-pregnancy body more quickly: Maintaining the fitness level is beneficial for your body during and after pregnancy. It helps you shed the additional weight gained during pregnancy easily.

What Are the Best Strength and Flexibility Exercises You Can Do While Pregnant?

Strength workouts help build and tone your muscles. Stronger muscles, in turn, help you to endure the weight you gain throughout your pregnancy and keep your joints from injuries as your ligaments relax. Here are the top strengthening exercises for pregnant women:

  • Weightlifting

A good way to increase your muscle tone when you’re expecting is weightlifting — just go for more reps using a lower weight than usual. You may also want to shift to machines, which bound your range of motion to reduce any chances of injury.

  • Pilates

Pilates routine centres mainly on strengthening your core and lengthening your muscles with low- to no-impact, which will help reduce backaches and develop your posture as well as your flexibility, as long as it is a pregnancy-appropriate routine.

  • Barre

Barre classes — a combination of Pilates, yoga and ballet-inspired moves — are superb for expecting women because they encompass strengthening your lower body and core without much jumping. They also include balance exercises, which help keep you stable as your baby bump throws off your balance. Be sure to inform your instructor that you’re pregnant before you start so he or she can give you modifications for the few exercises that can put extra strain on your abdominal muscles.

  • Yoga

Prenatal yoga is another ideal workout for moms-to-be: It boosts relaxation, flexibility, focus and deep breathing — an all – in – one preparation for the beautiful journey of birth.

Tips for Cardiovascular exercises while you are pregnant

All of these cardiovascular exercises increase blood circulation, tone your muscles and improves your endurance level:

  • Swimming

Swimming and water aerobics are just the ideal pregnancy workout. A dip in the pool aids in relieving nausea, sciatic pain, and swollen ankles. It’s gentle on your loosening joints and ligaments as the baby’s floating along with you.

It is advisable to step or slide into the water compared to diving or jumping in. Your growing baby isn’t prepared to handle the bubbles that form inside the body when you swiftly change altitudes under the pressure of the water. Hence, scuba diving is strictly a no-no.

  • Walking

The simplest exercise to fit into your hectic schedule is walking… and it’s a workout you can carry on right up until your delivery date. You don’t need any special equipment or a gym membership to join in — just a pair of good sneakers.

  • Running

Want to go to a higher level? Trained runners can stay on track for the duration of their pregnancy. Choose to work out on a treadmill or a level terrain and never overdo it as it makes you highly susceptible to injuries.

  • Ellipticals and stair climbers

Both ellipticals and stair climbers are good bets during pregnancy. Adjust speed, incline, and tension according to your comfort levels. Remember that as your pregnancy progresses, you may have a tougher time with resistance and you will need to watch your step to avoid stumbles.

  • Group dance or aerobics classes

Low-impact aerobics and dance workout classes like Zumba are a good way to get your heart rate up and get those endorphins flowing if you’re a rookie exerciser. As your pregnancy progresses, refrain from any activities that require watchful balance.

  • Indoor cycling

If at least six months before pregnancy, you have been spinning, then you should be able to carry on as long as you reduce the intensity of the workout. Indoor cycling can be great exercise, as it allows you to pedal at your own speed without the risk of falling or putting pressure on your ankle and knee joints.

  • Kickboxing

Many expecting kickboxers find they aren’t relatively as lithe or swift as pre-pregnancy, but if you still feel at ease getting your kicks in the ring and you have adequate experience, it’s okay to continue now.

  • High-intensity interval training workouts (HIIT)

High-intensity interval training certainly isn’t for every expecting woman. The workouts, which comprise of more hard-core moves to get your heart rate up followed by periods of rest, are simply too extreme to begin for the first time when you’re expecting.

However, if you’ve been at HIIT for some time and get the go-ahead from your practitioner, classes can be safe with adjustments to your routine, from your instructor.

Keep in mind that there are a multitude of ways to fit in fitness during pregnancy — as well as a few more exercises you shouldn’t do, too. If you’re at all uncertain about what’s safe, connect with our expert gynaecologists about what’s okay and what’s not for you. Whatever you do, try not to be too hard on yourself when it comes to exercising, and don’t forget to relax and enjoy!

Learn more about the Lamaze classes at the CK Birla Hospital for Women in Gurgaon.

 
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