Keeping Fit in Pregnancy – The Big Debate

According to Amir Siddiqui, CEO and Owner of Symmetry Gym, working out during pregnancy is definitely something that has become a norm recently. He explains, “A woman’s body undergoes physiological and mechanical changes during pregnancy, therefore, certain considerations have to be made for the exercise routine to be safe and effective. These changes range from an increase in resting heart rate to the loosening of ligaments around the pelvic region to the difference in weight distribution as the pregnancy progresses. And taking all these into account, the intensity and exercise selection will vary during pregnancy.” He advises it is always best to consult with your obstetrician in order to better understand the status and nature of your pregnancy.

Further elaborating, Sports Osteopath Leah Hearle reveals that studies have shown that healthy women undergoing normal pregnancies can participate safely in moderate fitness programs and maintain physical fitness without harm to their baby. She explains, “Exercising while pregnant is actually good for the baby, and training will make the baby stronger. Also, if you are fitter for the labor, then you will recover better.”

According to Hearle, women who exercise control their weight more easily and have fewer complications during pregnancy and birth. More health-related benefits include a reduced risk of the development of gestational diabetes and pregnancyinduced hypertension, decrease in postpartum depression symptoms, and a decreased incidence of urinary incontinence and preeclampsia, and no increased risk of preterm birth.

Water workouts are low-impact and gentle on your body. The water supports your joints and ligaments while working your muscles as you exercise, adds Hearle. “You don’t just have to swim—swimming is obviously very beneficial for heart rate training and aerobic exercise, but there are many other exercises that can be performed in the pool,” she says, “Aerobic exercises can range in intensity from walking, deep water running, cycling, and isolated core exercises.” Also, plyometrics can be done safely in the pool, including jump squats, hopping, and resistance training.

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