Benefits of Exercise During Pregnancy
Posted on 13 November 2017
Regular pregnancy exercise will keep you fit and strong, as well as help you maintain a better self-image, and feel more positive about yourself.
Exercise during pregnancy will help prepare you for the rigors of labour, by strengthening the muscles you will need to give birth. Labour is one of the most intense activities that women undergo, so your improved fitness, strength, and stamina will give you an advantage! In fact, women who have been participating in a regular exercise program can continue their program without major modifications. However, those who plan to begin a new exercise program should consult with their healthcare provider before beginning.
Regular cardiovascular exercise, 30 minutes 5 days a week, is preferable to intermittent activity. Resistance training (included here) should be performed 2 to 3 days per week on non-consecutive days.
Benefits of exercise during pregnancy:
More rapid return to pre-pregnancy weight, strength, and flexibility levels.
Fewer obstetric interventions.
Shorter active labor and less pain.
Less weight gain.
Improved digestion and reduced constipation.
Greater energy reserve.
Reduced “postpartum belly”.
Reduced back pain during pregnancy.
Tips for exercising during pregnancy:
Check with your healthcare provider before beginning any new program.
Wear the right clothes.
Warm-up and cool down.
Drink plenty of water.
Don’t lie flat on your back.
Don’t overdo it or get overheated.
Get up slowly.
Warning signs: stop if experiencing the following:
Any bleeding or gush of liquid from the vagina.
Sudden swelling of ankles or legs.
Dizziness or shortness of breath.
Severe abdominal pain.
Elevated pulse or blood pressure that persists post-exercise.
Contractions or premature labor.
Decreased fetal movement.
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