Balancing Out Imbalances
Pregnancy also changes our centre of gravity as our bump grows and throws us off balance. Movements that we have taken for granted for so long such as getting up and down from the floor can now feel strange, and place undue pressure on our hips and pelvis if done incorrectly.
Pregnancy specific exercise teaches us how to move in a safe and healthy way, as well as helping to find new balance in our bodies. It builds awareness of our new shape, and improves our neurological connection with muscle for more effective & efficient movements, not to mention creating mobility in our joints, and building our body for the athleticism which parenthood requires! Even when they’re no longer in utero, carrying a baby – whether in our arms, a sling or in a pram – can be hard work!
The Power of Movement
Even though it might be the last thing you feel like if suffering from morning sickness, movement can actually help to combat feelings of nausea. Yoga-based exercise can also teach us how to harness the power of breath – to calm our minds, better activate our muscles and energise – which of course can be carried through to childbirth to help manage contraction pain. Not only that but the endorphins created through exercise also help to boost our mood and balance out hormonal changes for a smoother ride throughout pregnancy!
Don’t Ignore the Pelvic Floor!
Encouraging pelvic floor engagement in pregnancy is vital to help support your baby’s weight and protect against incontinence postnatally. The right pelvic floor exercises will also teach you how to relax your pelvic floor. Being able to ‘let go’ as well as tighten is a key aspect of giving birth vaginally!
Being in tune with our bodies through exercise during pregnancy can help to protect it from some of the most common pregnancy induced problems and injuries. It can also play a major part in a smooth childbirth experience, and in our subsequent postnatal recovery; enabling us to harness our muscle memory, especially where the pelvic floor is concerned.
If you are newly pregnant and also new to exercise then it’s a good idea to wait until you are 14 weeks into your pregnancy when the placenta is fully attached before you start exercising. If you have been exercising prior to pregnancy then it’s still a good idea to avoid anything new in those first 14 weeks. Even the most avid exercisers are best advised to do things a little more gently during the first trimester and a period of such enormous physical changes! And do make sure you find pregnancy-specific classes, or an instructor who is trained in pre and postnatal training to make sure you are doing the right things for your body.
If you’d like to find out more about our range of Zoom pregnancy specific fitness classes explore here!