Staying active while pregnant is one of the best things you can do for yourself and your growing baby. If you are experiencing a typical/normal pregnancy and your doctor has not put any restrictions on what you can do, then moving your body has both physical and mental benefits.
Exercising during pregnancy has numerous physical benefits including a decrease in both backaches and fatigue, and activities such as yoga and Pilates can help with your posture. It also promotes healthy weight gain during pregnancy and maintains your overall level of fitness.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend that pregnant women get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity every week. The CDC also cautions women to be aware of the following changes that take place during pregnancy:
● Joints - the hormones made during pregnancy cause the ligaments that support your joints to become relaxed. This makes the joints more mobile and at risk for injury.
● Balance - during pregnancy, the extra weight in the front of your body shifts your centre of gravity. This makes you less stable and more likely to lose your balance.
● Breathing - when you exercise, oxygen and blood flow are directed to your muscles and away from other areas of your body. While you are pregnant, your need for oxygen increases and you may feel a shortness of breath.
In the UK, NHS recommendations also recognise the importance of certain types of physical activity during pregnancy.