Exercise during pregnancy can seem like a scary prospect. Wendy Powell, exercise and diet expert for mums gives us her top tips for safe pregnancy exercise.
- Don’t exercise intensely. Stop exercising when you feel tired, and don’t exercise to the point of exhaustion or gasping for breath!
- Be consistent. Exercise regularly and consistently – at least 3 days a week, for 20-30 minutes at a time
- Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of pure water, especially before, during and after exercise
- A good sports bra that fits properly and supports your breasts is essential!
- Use good posture. Use your legs and squat to pick things up, don’t strain your back
- Warm up and cool down and stretch slowly and thoroughly
- Nourish your body and your baby… don’t ‘eat for two’ and avoid the empty calories of processed foods, crisps, fizzy drinks and excess sugar
- Keep your balance! Avoid activities that require jumping or sudden changes in direction
- Don’t over-stretch – the hormone relaxing has made all your joints less stable
- Don’t exercise on your back for more than 30 seconds, or at all if uncomfortable. This position can reduce blood flow to the uterus. If you feel out of breathe or uncomfortable, simply roll on to your left side and relax, breathing deeply. Also, avoid prolonged periods of motionless standing
- Keep aerobic exercise low impact – however you can continue running or jogging at moderate intensity if you were a runner pre-pregnancy
- Yoga is fine, provided your teacher is trained in pre and postnatal instruction. Avoid ‘hot’ or ‘fast’ yoga as well as inverted positions or positions that require spending long periods of time on your back
Safe pregnancy exercise requires you to use your common sense when choosing activities, listen to your body, take frequent breaks and only do what feels comfortable.
Wendy Powell, creator of the MuTu System (www.mutusystem.com) , the exercise & diet programme especially for mums and named the 'Mummy Tummy Guru' by the Mummy Bloggers!