Exercising While Pregnant: Benefits for Mothers-to-be

Exercise has many benefits for mothers-to-be

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Exercising while pregnant has many benefits, but check with your doctor first

Exercising during pregnancy is generally safe and has many benefits

In the 1950s pregnant women were advised to limit their activities to just one mile of walking daily. That’s all changed.

We now know that in the absence of pregnancy complications, exercise has minimal risks and many demonstrated benefits for mothers-to-be.

Benefits of Exercising during Pregnancy

  1. Reduces backaches, constipation, bloating and swelling
  2. Increases energy and stamina
  3. Lifts spirits and balances mood
  4. Improves posture
  5. Improves/maintains muscle tone and strength
  6. Promotes better sleep
  7. Gives a sense of control and self-confidence
  8. Offers an opportunity to socialize. A prenatal exercise class is a great way to meet other expectant moms
  9. Prevents wear and tear on joints (which become loosened during pregnancy due to normal hormonal changes) by activating the lubricating synovial fluid in joints
  10. Helps build strong muscles and a fit heart, which can greatly ease the process of labour and delivery.

Tips for Exercising while Pregnant

It’s important to stay well hydrated, and to avoid over-heating and prolonged periods of high heart rate.

Do not begin a fitness program during pregnancy without consulting your doctor. If you exercised regularly before becoming pregnant, your doctor will probably advise you to continue your program, with some modifications and cautions.

Before making any changes to your fitness regimen, talk to your doctor and/or visit a personal trainer who is Pre- and Post-Natal Certified for guidance on the right exercise program for you.

Originally published in Wellness Matters, Canada Wide Media’s quarterly newsletter on health and wellness.