The period of pregnancy demands a lot from an expecting mother. Even before becoming pregnant, she needs to be healthy and strong in order to conceive a baby. Along the journey there are many choices you will make, such as whether to go through the public or private hospital system, or whether to use IVF in choosing the gender of your baby, either way, once you become pregnant the most important thing is that you stay healthy and strong throughout the pregnancy.
Increasing muscle strengths is essential during pregnancy period, during delivery, and after pregnancy. In order to achieve this, an expecting mother can practice Pilates exercises while pregnant. Even if you’ve never tried it before becoming pregnant, beginner Pilates classes online can aid in increasing the general body strength and coordination.
This article will discuss aspects of Pilates exercises and why you as an expecting mother would benefit from practicing Pilates during pregnancy.
Pilates during Pregnancy
Pilates consists of low-impact exercise which helps in strengthening muscles and increasing flexibility of certain body parts, all whilst putting less strain on the body joints. In pregnant women these exercises are essential in improving strength, posture, and balance. And similar to yoga it emphasizes relaxation and breathing techniques during the exercises.
In Pilates exercises, major movements are focused on three main areas; the tummy of the expecting mother, the muscles of the pelvic floor, and the back muscles. By improving the strength of the muscles in the body, you will be improving your posture during pregnancy as well as developing a more stable core, which will help bring you comfort through the pregnancy, and during childbirth and recovery. Online pilates classes make it possible to practice in the comfort and convenience of your own home.
You may not be aware that during pregnancy the ligaments in your joints are loosened due to the increased production of a hormone called relaxin during pregnancy. It is a necessary hormone increase that allows the body to be more malleable and adjust to a growing baby, however as a result it makes you more vulnerable to injury. It makes Pilates an ideal exercise choice as it’s not as high impact as other exercises. While practicing Pilates avoid moves that put a strain on you carry out safe and gentle moves.
Benefits of Pilates Exercises
Constantly doing Pilates exercises are beneficial to the body as it will:
- Strengthens the muscles of the tummy and hence helps the body cope with the current strains your body is experiencing due to the increased weight of the growing baby.
- Can reduce constant back pain; this is achieved by strengthening back muscles. Similarly, by constantly exercising the tummy muscles, the pelvis and the back are stabilized and this reduces back pains.
- Strengthens the pelvic floor; the pelvic floor is critically important during pregnancy as it supports the growth and movement of the baby in the womb. Additionally, a strengthened pelvic floor helps in supporting the bladder and bowel thus reducing instances of peeing on oneself while sneezing or coughing.
- Improves body balance; during pregnancy it can be hard for expecting mothers to maintain a stable balance as the baby bumps grows. By practicing Pilates exercises, you will be able to stabilize and strengthen your core which will positively impact your body balance.
- Relieving strain at the pelvic and back areas; this is through practicing Pilates positions such as transferring your weight to your knees and hands while bent down, as this will help relieve back pains.
- Helps in controlling breathing of an individual, which is vital during the process of labor.
It’s evident that general exercises, and especially Pilates, are essential for a pregnant woman. Before starting out, we suggest that you enroll in a Pilates class that is specifically for expecting mothers with a certified trainer. If you cannot attend a class dedicated to expecting mothers it’s not an issue, you could enroll in a beginners class as the exercises will be gentler and make sure to inform your trainer you’re pregnant. This will prompt the trainer to ensure they modify the moves for your needs.
An expecting mother needs to engage in low-impact exercises which are healthy to the baby and beneficial to their own wellbeing. By practicing Pilates exercises, expecting mothers are able to strengthen their muscles during pregnancy, where the muscles are most vulnerable, improve their posture, and body balance. Make sure you follow any outlined precautions, and then the exercises will yield positive results to the expecting mother during and after pregnancy.