Exercise During Pregnancy

Exercise During Pregnancy

Getting regular exercise during
pregnancy can often help reduce any physical discomforts. It can also help with recovery
after your baby is born. But talk with your  healthcare provider or midwife before
starting
an exercise program.

Physical activity may be especially
good for women with gestational diabetes. The American College of Obstetricians and
Gynecologists says that women who exercise and are physically fit before pregnancy
can
safely continue exercising throughout the pregnancy. Women who weren’t active before
pregnancy or who have health or pregnancy complications should talk with their healthcare
provider or midwife before starting any exercise during pregnancy.

Two mothers walking with jogging strollers

All women should be assessed by
their healthcare provider or midwife before starting or continuing an exercise program
in
pregnancy.

Exercise may not be safe if you have
any of these conditions:

  • Preterm labor in current or past
    pregnancies

  • Vaginal bleeding

  • Cervical problems

  • Leaking of amniotic fluid

  • Shortness of breath

  • Dizziness or fainting

  • Decreased fetal activity or
    other complications

  • Increased heart rate
    (tachycardia), although heart rate is often higher in pregnant women 

  • Certain health problems such as
    high blood pressure or heart disease

Don’t do these types of exercise during
pregnancy

Here are some exercises you should
not do while pregnant:

  • Horseback riding

  • Water skiing

  • Scuba diving

  • High-altitude skiing

  • Contact sports

  • Any exercise that can cause a serious fall

  • Exercising on your back after
    the first trimester. This is because of reduced blood flow to the uterus.

  • Vigorous exercise in hot,
    humid weather. Pregnant women are less able to get rid of extra heat.

  • Exercise that makes you hold
    your breath. This can cause more pressure in your abdomen.