Exercise is safe and healthy to do in low-risk and uncomplicated pregnancies. If you have a high risk-pregnancy it is important to get clearance from Dr Morris prior to starting a new exercise program.
It is recommended to do 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise on most if not all days.
Positive effects of exercise:
- Help you stay at a healthy weight
- Make you stronger and fitter – good for coping with pregnancy, labour and better post-birth outcome
- Helps to decrease with pregnancy related pains eg back pain
- Reduces the chance of developing Gestational Diabetes
What exercise is safe?
- If you have not previously been exercising prior to pregnancy, ensure to start off gently – eg Pilates, walking, swimming
- Avoid contact sports or anything with a high risk of falling – eg netball, horse riding
- Avoid overheating – eg saunas, spas and “Hot Yoga”
- Avoid high impact activity, unless cleared by Dr Morris or a women’s health physiotherapist to do so
- Ensure to keep hydrated, protect your pelvic floor, and avoid exercising if it is causing pain
Pilates and Pregnancy
Pilates is a great way to help:
- Strengthen your core muscles to avoid large abdominal separation post birth
- Strengthen your inner thigh and glute muscles to help reduce pelvic and lower back discomforts during pregnancy
- Strengthen your pelvic floor and ensure it is kept from being overloaded
- Improving your upper body strength to help with lifting baby post-birth
- Improving your breathing and relaxation
- Improve your mobility especially in your upper and lower back
By Shanice Gabriel
Physiotherapist & Pilates Clinician