Exercise During Pregnancy: What Should We Be Doing?

Exercise during pregnancy can be beneficial for both the mother and the baby, as long as it is done safely and under the guidance of a medical professional. It may prevent or treat gestational diabetes, increase your energy, improve your mood and promote muscle tone, strength and endurance.

If you’d like to start a new exercise routine to improve your health during pregnancy, you should start very slowly and be careful not to overexert yourself. If you were exercising before you were pregnant, you should be able to continue a modified version of your routine throughout your pregnancy unless you are experiencing a high-risk pregnancy. In either case, it is important to talk to your healthcare provider to find out what kind of exercise is safe for you and your baby.

5 best exercises to do while pregnant

Exercise may help relieve backaches, constipation and bloating. It has also shown to help shorten labor and delivery and prevent excess weight gain. Here are the five safest exercises you can do while pregnant:

  1. Brisk walking
    This will give you a good cardiovascular workout without too much impact on your knees or ankles.
  2. Swimming
    Swimming is a great way to exercise without putting any pressure on your joints.
  3. Spinning
    Using a stationary bike reduces your risk of falling and also helps boost your heart rate without over-stressing your joints.
  4. Yoga
    Yoga strengthens your muscles, stimulates blood circulation and enhances relaxation, which may contribute to healthy blood pressure levels throughout pregnancy.
  5. Low-impact aerobics
    Step-aerobics, elliptical trainers and treadmills help strengthen your heart and lungs while maintaining muscle tone.

3 of the worst exercises to do while pregnant

Though exercising has many benefits for pregnant women, there are certain exercises that may cause more harm than good. Avoid these exercises and stay safe throughout your pregnancy:

  1. Heavy weight training
  2. Intense aerobic workouts
  3. Any exercises that involve lying on your back or stomach

This information is not intended to be medical advice. Please check with your doctor before beginning any new exercise routine.

For more information about safe and healthy exercise routines for pregnancy, call Bay Area Physicians for Women at 251-344-5900.