Exercise During Pregnancy

Women often tend to limit physical activities during pregnancy. While strenuous activities could be harmful for the pregnant mom, but moderate exercise is beneficial during pregnancy. Your level of physical fitness before pregnancy will determine your exercise plan during pregnancy. Before planning your exercise schedule, you should always consult your physician.Benefits of exercise

There are several advantages of exercising during pregnancy. Exercises help to strengthen your muscles, lungs and heart. It prepares your body to endure the challenge of carrying the growing fetus. It also eases the delivery process. You can also manage labor pain by controlling your breathing. Common problems associated with pregnancy, such as constipation, stress, depression, sleeping difficulties and fatigue could be reduced through regular exercises. If you follow a regular exercise regime during pregnancy, you can quickly regain your pre-pregnancy body shape after delivery.

Pregnancy exercises
Walking is the best exercise for pregnant women, irrespective of their fitness levels. Try to cover a mile everyday. Do not stoop while walking. Keep your spine straight and hold your head high while walking. Always wear good sports shoes. If you were used to a sedentary lifestyle before pregnancy, you should walk with moderate speed for twenty to forty minutes, at least thrice a week. As your body becomes used to the regular physical activities, you can gradually pick up speed or cover extra distances. Women who were physically active before pregnancy could swim, run, bike or practice yoga during pregnancy. If you have less energy to follow active exercise schedule, you might find dancing beneficial during this time.

Exercises to avoid
Before starting a new exercise schedule or continuing with your pre-pregnancy exercises, you should always consult your doctor. Excess physical activities are often not recommended for pregnant women suffering from vaginal bleeding or spotting, early contraction and high blood pressure. You should stop exercising the moment you feel tired or dizzy.

If your heart palpitation increases or if you experience shortness of breath or back or pelvis pain, you should stop exercising. Pregnant women should avoid jogging, sit-ups and weight lifting. In the later stage of pregnancy, when your weight increases and your belly becomes large, cycling, horse riding and skiing should be avoided.