Physical activity of the expectant mother is necessary for the successful course of pregnancy, relatively easy childbirth and the health of the baby.
The gestation period is by no means intended for a sedentary lifestyle and constant lying on the couch. Your excellent physical shape while carrying a baby is the key to both your health and the health of your baby.
Even if you did not engage in physical activity before pregnancy, then its onset becomes an important reason for starting physical activity. But here it is necessary not to overdo it, since lifestyle changes are always stressful, and stress is the last thing a pregnant woman needs.
If you do not have a sporting background, then you should only start under the guidance of an instructor who specializes in fitness for pregnant women. He must know the nuances and will not allow you to harm yourself.
Also, permission to study from a doctor who monitors your pregnancy is required. During this period of your life he is the most important boss for you!
What benefits do pregnant women get from physical activity?
- Improves blood flow and lymph circulation.
- Strengthens tissue respiration.
- Reduces the risks of the formation of varicose veins.
- It activates metabolism, helping to saturate the body with useful substances.
- Does not allow you to gain a lot of excess weight.
- Prevents, as a consequence of the previous point, gestational diabetes mellitus, the so-called “pregnancy diabetes”.
- Helps the body eliminate toxins that poison both the mother and the fetus.
- Prevents hypoxia from developing in the unborn child.
- Reduces the concentration of meconium in the amniotic fluid, reducing the likelihood of pathological development of the cardiovascular and nervous system in the baby.
- Strengthens the immune system in the expectant mother.
- Strengthens the muscles of the abdomen and back, that is, the so-called “bark”. And also the muscles of the pelvic floor, which is necessary for a successful childbirth.
- Promotes an easier course of the process of childbirth and recovery after them.
- Does not allow the functionality of muscles, joints and ligaments to decrease in the expectant mother.
- Diversity in the life of a pregnant woman, the so-called “picture change”, which improves the psychological state.
Research and medical statistics
A 36-year study by the Canadian Association of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, published in J Obstet Gynaecon Can, showed that women who exercise during pregnancy are more likely to have a labor-free delivery. The process of childbirth itself is more dynamic and comfortable for women in labor. It also reduces the likelihood of uterine tone during pregnancy.
Research has also refuted the common misconception that physical activity spoils the quality of breast milk, making it bitter. No connection was found between the content of substances in milk and lactic acid in muscles after exercise.
What sport should pregnant women do?
The main sport is walking in an area with high air quality. Forests, parks and more. Walking in a well-ventilated area on a treadmill is also a good option.
Swimming is a good sport. It is very relaxing for the head and body. It is also very useful for the muscles and spine of the expectant mother.
In addition to physical activity, breathing exercises are good. This has a beneficial effect on both the baby and the mother. The body is saturated with oxygen, which is important during pregnancy. In addition, a practiced breathing technique will help a woman in childbirth – to ease contractions and relieve pain.
Of other aerobic activities, it is recommended exclusively:
- Recumbent exercise bike (up to 2 trimesters)
- Water aerobics
But the best load for the expectant mother is still fitness, adapted to the current “situation”. Only he will give a full load on all systems of the body and will most positively affect the health and functionality of the body.
The ideal training regimen is daily up to 1 hour.
During physical activity during pregnancy, it is strictly forbidden to:
- hold breath;
- make sudden movements;
- lose balance;
- lie on your stomach face down;
- experience pain and discomfort;
- significantly increase the heart rate above 140 beats per minute;
- perform intense cardiovascular exercise;
- perform a long hold of hands raised up;
- lift more than 4 kg (for very advanced athletes, more is possible, but so that you can do 20 repetitions);
- do physical exercise in the last 1.5-2 months of pregnancy;
- practice fitball due to the threat of losing balance;
- continue training when you feel unwell;
- do exercises from my stop list;
- perform deep deflections of the body;
- do any exercises while lying on your back after 22 weeks of pregnancy.
My exercise stop list:
- Raising the legs.
- Twists are straight.
- The twists are oblique.
- Any other exercises on the anterior abdominal wall.
- Pull of the vertical block.
- Full and half squats.
- Leg press.
- Bench press in any form.
All restrictions last from the moment of pregnancy until the end of the 1.5 month period after childbirth.
Exercise is prohibited for pregnant women if:
- There is toxicosis, accompanied by vomiting.
- In the last pregnancy, there was a miscarriage.
- The uterus is in good shape.
- There is gestosis.
- There is a low location of the placenta.
- There are abdominal pains.
- There are diseases of the cardiovascular system.
- There are diseases of the lungs and other organs of the respiratory system.
- You have cervical insufficiency or if you have had stitches in your cervix (cerclage).
- Multiple (two or more fetuses) pregnancy.
- There is a risk of premature birth.
- There is placenta previa persisting after the 26th week of pregnancy.
- Vaginal bleeding is present, especially in the second or third trimester of pregnancy.
- There is a rupture of the fetal bladder, leakage or rupture of amniotic fluid.
- You have preeclampsia or pregnancy-induced high blood pressure.
- There is chronic hypertension.
- There is severe anemia.
The main principle for doing sports for pregnant women is do no harm! Therefore, during this period there should be no “sports of the highest achievements”. Only comfortable, but not lazy mode. The only goal is the benefit for mom and baby. Only benefits and no risks! All healthy and happy childbirth!
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