Can I exercise while I am pregnant?
Yes! GLOW’s Women’s Health Physiotherapist Genia Barmakov explains
Exercise is safe and is recommended for the many benefits it offers a normal, healthy pregnancy. These include:
● Improve and maintain overall general fitness
● Promote healthy weight and decrease risk of Gestational Diabetes and Pre-eclampsia
● Reduce risk of back pain and other musculoskeletal issues
● Improve mental wellbeing
● Reduce constipation
● Improve sleep
● Improve posture
● Help to manage stress and improve mood
● Prepare body for childbirth
● Optimise the recovery postnatally
Pre-exercise screen with your Obstetrician is important to ensure that there are no contraindications to exercise such as persistent bleeding, pre-eclampsia or indicators of premature labour.
Importantly, there is no evidence to suggest that regular exercise during an uncomplicated pregnancy is detrimental to the woman or fetus. The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG, 2016)
It is recommended that you do 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week. This could be broken down to 30-40 minute sessions five days in the week. It should include both aerobic and strengthening components and be modified for pregnancy in all its stages.
Some changes in pregnancy require special consideration so that you can safely exercise such as:
● Increasing body weight and a shift of the centre of gravity affects balance and weight distribution on the joints and muscles
● General softening of the joints and connective tissues especially around pelvic girdle, may result in pelvic or low back pain
● Cardiovascular changes and increased oxygen demands during pregnancy that may affect the body’s ability to function optimally during exercise
There are many types of exercise that are suitable during pregnancy:
Clinical pilates and
Pregnancy mat pilates
Pelvic floor and core exercises should be a part of every exercise workout
Recently published Exercise Guidelines from The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG, 2016) state that for women with uncomplicated pregnancy regular exercise has many benefits - fitness, prevention of excessive weight gain, body image, perceived health status and reduced symptoms of depression. It has also been linked to shorter and less complicated labour and fewer neonatal complications. A thorough pre exercise assessment by a Women’s Health Physiotherapist is recommended to optimise these benefits.
Call 9769 5606 or contact GLOW to make your appointment or book a pilates class with Genia
Genia Barmakov is an experienced Women's Health Physiotherapist and Acupuncturist who
provides individual assessment and treatment, clinical pilates and small group clinical mat pilates at GLOW