Exercising throughout pregnancy

Some people think that exercise has to be paused during a woman’s pregnancy but this is not always the case. Many women may benefit from exercising through pregnancy so long as there are no pre-existing medical conditions or concerns.

Low impact exercises tend to be safer and just as effective for expecting mums as they are more focused on the individual and body weight activities, allowing you to go at your own pace. Low impact exercises include: walking, cycling, swimming, aquarobics, yoga, pilates and some forms of dance. While these pursuits are often considered safer, contact sports or other risky pursuits such as rugby, horse riding and skiing should be avoided while pregnant.

The benefits of exercise may include stronger muscles, especially in the back muscles which are key throughout pregnancy. Improved posture, circulation, weight control, stress relief and general enjoyment are just some of the reasons why you might want to keep up, or start an exercise regimen while pregnant. If you feel like your body needs the support of any essential pregnancy vitamins and minerals, even if you’re eating well and have good health, it’s recommended you speak with a healthcare professional when and as any concerns or questions arise.

It’s always important to discuss your limitations with your doctor, but in general it’s best to avoid anything too strenuous or exhausting. During pregnancy, ligaments may become loosened, which can increase the risk of sprains and other injuries. In addition, your balance and coordination can be altered or you could tire more easily, which might make it more likely for you to take a tumble, so extra caution is necessary.

Every woman is different, so remember it’s a conversation you will need to have with your own doctor. But if you are cleared to exercise, enjoy it as a part of your overall plan for wellbeing – it might just become your favourite part of the day.