Pilates Exercise During Pregnancy

By Patricia | March 6, 2009
Pilates Exercises During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a great experience for most women. It is a new journey in a woman's life and comes with its own anxious moments, in the form of emotional and physical health. Anything that alleviates these troubles is always welcome. Any form Pilates is definitely a great option.

Most people are aware of the benefits of Pilates. However there are misconceptions about how Pilates should be avoided during pregnancy, since it is a strenuous exercise form. This is far from true. Pilates is not just good during pregnancy, it's great. It works wonders on the emotional as well as physical plane. Pilates is great for strengthening core abdominal, back, and pelvic muscles. During pregnancy, these are the muscle groups that need maximum attention since they bear the weight of the growing baby and help the mother maintain proper posture.

Care has to be taken, during performing these exercises. Whether you have done Pilates before pregnancy or not, it is best advised that pregnant women, enroll in a pre-natal Pilates class. Choose a class where one-on-one attention is greater.

Increase your calorie intake, since you are now burning more calories and the baby inside may be at a risk of not receiving proper nutrition. Check with the pre-natal instructor and your physician. Consume adequate amounts of water to keep yourself well hydrated and the hormones in good circulation.

As you advance into the later trimesters of pregnancy, your bulge keeps getting bigger and your center of gravity shifts. Do not over exert yourself with the exercises. You can get dizzy or breathless. Take a step back and maintain caution while doing these exercises. Make sure that your transition from one pose to another is smooth and not in jerks especially when bending is involved. Avoid exercises that involve lying down flat during the second trimester and onwards. Lying down flat is not advised as it can put pressure on the baby and curtail bloody supply to it. Also avoid, raising your legs above your head by lifting your hips. Legs raises can be done by keeping the hip on the floor. That way pressure is not exerted on the uterus and the baby.

During pregnancy, hormones can improve muscle and joint flexibility for eventual delivery of the baby. A woman might feel more encouraged to stretch that extra inch for feeling the extra pull. It is best advised to decrease the range of motion.

If you do have diastasis, where your abdominal muscles are separated, make sure you let the instructor know. Check with your physician to know more about diastasis and whether you have one. Modify your Pilates exercise for the same or stop if advised to do so.

With the above pointers in mind, Pilates will add that extra glow to you skin, make you feel more energetic, ease your delivery process, and keep your baby well nourished and ready for the big world out here.

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