The pregnant woman must do at least 30 minutes of physical exercise per day and, at least, 3 times a week, to stay in shape during pregnancy, send more oxygen to the baby, prepare for delivery and facilitate recovery after childbirth.
Another 5 good reasons to exercise in pregnancy include the fact that exercise helps to:
- Relieve or prevent back pain ;
- Decrease the swelling of the legs and feet;
- Reduce the risk of gestational diabetes ;
- Reduce the risk of hypertension in pregnancy that can lead to a condition called preeclampsia ;
- Decrease the chances of getting too fat during pregnancy. See how many pounds you can put on: How many pounds can I put on during pregnancy?
In addition, pregnant women who practice physical exercise have more energy and mood, sleep better at night and have more muscle strength, flexibility and endurance.
Pregnancy exercises should always be guided by a physical educator and obstetrician and do not harm the baby when the pregnant woman practices low intensity exercises that are recommended during pregnancy, such as walking, pilates, weight training, swimming or yoga.
When to start exercise in pregnancy
Physical exercise in pregnancy can be done from the beginning of pregnancy, however, before starting the exercises, the pregnant woman should consult the obstetrician, because in some cases, the practice of physical exercise is not recommended as in case of heart problems or pulmonary, vaginal bleeding or risk of premature birth.
After the obstetrician releases the practice of exercises, the pregnant woman must take some precautions such as:
- Always stretch before and after exercise. Learn more at: Stretching exercises in pregnancy ;
- Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated during exercise;
- Avoid or superfood .
In addition, if the pregnant woman did not exercise before pregnancy, she should start with only 10 minutes of exercise per day, increasing until reaching at least 30 minutes per day. If the pregnant woman already practiced exercises before becoming pregnant, she can continue exercising at the same level, as long as she feels comfortable and the doctor or physical educator agrees.
What exercises can the pregnant woman do
A great exercise for pregnant women is walking, as it provides moderate aerobic conditioning, with minimal stress on the joints. Other good options include weight training with more reps, pilates and yoga. Find out which are the best exercises to practice in pregnancy .
On the other hand, exercises like diving, ice hockey, football, basketball, gymnastics, water skiing, surfing or horse riding are not recommended due to the risk of complications or falling.
See a good walking workout for pregnant women .
When to stop exercising in pregnancy
The pregnant woman should stop exercising and consult the obstetrician when it occurs:
- Vaginal bleeding or fluid leaking from the intimate region;
- Increased shortness of breath;
- Chest pain;
- Irregular or rapid heartbeat;
- Uterine contractions that continue after rest;
- Decreased baby’s movements.
In the presence of these symptoms, the pregnant woman should consult the obstetrician or go to the emergency room to be evaluated and, if necessary, receive appropriate treatment, which may involve rest and the absence of physical exercise.
In addition to physical exercise, see 10 foods that pregnant women should not eat to ensure health.