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What Exercises Can I Perform While I’m Pregnant?

ExpertsPost Category - ExpertsExperts

Q: What exercises can I perform while I’m pregnant?

A. Well, the stage of your pregnancy will determine what exercises are safe to perform. For instance, after your fourth month avoid all exercises on your back as this restricts blood flow to the unborn baby. This doesn’t, however, mean that you can’t train your abdominals. Abdominal muscles are a crucial part of the way we stand and perform tasks. They provide much function and support our bodies. During pregnancy, stronger abdominal muscles will help to alleviate stress on the back and will enable greater function and balance. So therefore, yes, there is very much a point to continue to condition your abdominals during pregnancy.

Specifically, the plank can be performed but care must be taken at all times and avoid any sudden movements. Planks can also be performed on your side also. Remember with the plank exercise that stress is placed on the abdominals and not on your hips. We can measure this by how much leverage you gain from your feet. You need to be resting on your forearms and tip-toes. So stick with your usual abdominal exercises up until your fourth month and then select exercises that you can perform that don’t require you to be on your back.

In terms of squats and lunges, these movements can be performed so long as you do not use external resistance and be selective on your range of motion. Squats can potentially place more stress against the pelvic floor and lower back so beware. Only perform exercises where you are able to control and balance yourself. Use a stable object to balance with if you wish.

Remember to seek advice from your doctor before you begin a training program and ensure that safety is observed at all times. Working with a personal trainer will provide more confidence so that you can train optimally and safely. Lastly, take plenty of rests and breaks, particularly during squats and lunges, as exercising during pregnancy can be very demanding for your body. Drink plenty of fluids and replace lost nutrients as soon as possible. Have fun.

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