Guest post by Ajay of UrbanWired.com
So the stork is going to visit and you are very happy about it. While pregnant you are snowballed by a lot of advice, tips on how to take care of yourself and the baby, what to do and what not to do. Well, you can definitely add exercising to your “what to do list.”
You can absolutely exercise during pregnancy. Keep yourself fit and active because a fit and active mother will pave the way for a healthy baby.
Here are some safe exercises that you can perform during pregnancy:
• Swimming: Swimming is a low intensity exercise and very good for women who feel bloated and heavy during pregnancy. It will ease the pain in your feet and back and you will get some good cardiovascular workout without straining yourself. With swimming you also reduce any risk of injury which is the main point of concern for mothers-to-be.
• Stretching: Stretching is a safe exercise during pregnancy which helps relax your muscles and also works them up. Some stretching exercises that you can do are: rotate your neck clockwise and anti clockwise, relax your shoulders and rotate them, sit down and spread your legs and lift them slowly, and rotate them.
-Stand on one foot and rotate the other ankle; repeat in the other direction. Stand straight and move your arms in a breast stroke motion.
• Yoga: Yoga is an ancient practice that can be of great help during pregnancy. Most yoga studios offer prenatal yoga, where the instructor will have been specially trained to show you the most beneficial asanas as well as important contraindications. There are many videos available on YouTube if getting out to a class isn’t an option.
• Kegel Exercises: Kegel exercises are very good for controlling the bladder and the
uterus during pregnancy. They strengthen the pelvic floor muscles which will be helpful in labour and in the postpartum period. To do Kegel exercises, stand still and concentrate on your pelvic area and imagine you are trying to control your bladder, contract your pelvic muscles as tight as you can and hold it for at least 5 minutes. Repeat this exercise for 5-10 minutes every day. Some women find the image of an elevator moving up and down helpful. It’s as important to control the muscles on the up as it is on the down.
• Tailor sit: Sit on the floor on your knees and cross your ankles behind you. Now, bend over and try to keep your back straight. This exercise is very good for your back as the lower back pains a lot during pregnancy. It helps ease the muscles around that area and relaxes them. Try doing this exercise whenever possible.
• Dance: Dancing is a great way to exercise yourself and you can dance for an hour or half a day to enjoy all its benefits. It will de-stress you and help you release good relaxing hormones. It will give you a good cardiovascular workout. Belly dancing was actually meant for pregnant and labouring mamas!
• Weight Training: It might come as a shock to you but you can weight train during pregnancy. You just need to use light weights and tone down your workout regime as you advance into your pregnancy.
Always consult your doctor or midwife before starting a new type of exercise.