Nordic walking, walking, swimming and aqua aerobics, yoga, pilates, body ball, stretching, exercises in childbirth classes, fitness for pregnant women – such exercises are recommended for pregnant women.

“A woman with a properly developing pregnancy can and should reasonably exercise, preferably every day for at least 30 minutes at a time – tells the e-zdrowie portal Professor Agata Karowicz-Bilińska of the Medical University of Łódź.

According to global recommendations, moderate physical activity is recommended from the very beginning of the pregnancy until the end, unless there is a threat of miscarriage or premature childbirth.

Physical activity is recommended. But what kind?

The exercises being done by a pregnant woman should serve the elimination of the negative effects of the body transformations occurring during the pregnancy, such as the shift of the centre of gravity, shift of the spine curve, and ailments of the lumbar spine.

Gynaecologists particularly recommend nordic walking. This is not just the perfect sport for seniors, but for future moms as well.

“This is a completely different kind of walking, which relieves the lumbar region of the spine, the sacroiliac joints, thus helping to cope with the pregnancy pain. It also enforces the spine muscles and promotes the preservation of a proper posture," explains Professor Karowicz–Bilińska.

Other recommended forms of physical activity include walking, swimming and aqua aerobics, i.e. exercises in water, as well as yoga, pilates, and body ball – exercises with a large ball. Other recommendations include exercises in childbirth classes, stretching, or fitness for pregnant women.

The instructors of the exercises for pregnant women should be aware of their condition, and the pregnant women should stop exercising immediately in the event of trouble.

Slim women have better tolerance of pregnancy

As noted by Professor Karowicz – Bilińska, the lowest rik of pregnancy complications appear in pregnant women with the BMI (body mass index) below 23, i.e. those with a slim figure. Meanwhile, there is a significant rise in complications in patients with BMI above 30.

BMI is calculated by dividing the individual's body mass in kilograms by the square of their height in metres. It is assumed that people with proper weight have a BMI between 18.5 and 24.99 kg/m2. BMI over 25 kg/m2 signifies overweight.

Overweight pregnant women must take into account the increased risk of foetus atrophy and its development disorders, harm to the child during birth, and more complicated postpartum period. Therefore experts concince that the excess weight should be dropped before getting pregnant.

Pregnancy and change of eating habits

According to Professor Karowicz-Bilińska, as many as 44 percent of pregnant women do not change their eating habits, while 50 percent is not aware of and does not apply the rules of healthy nourishment. The only element promoting pregnancy development is their use of vitamin supplements.

Prof. Karowicz-Bilińska also reminds that many women make the mistake of “easting for two" from the very beginning of the pregnancy. Meanwhile, during the first trimester, there is no increased energy demand, and it is not very intensive during the second and third trimesters.

The proper weight gain during pregnancy is 12.5 kg, and should be at 6.8 kg for overweight individuals.

Pregnancy is certainly not a good time to try to slim down. The breastfeeding period is a good time to lose excess weight, because the energy associated with feeding is much greater than during the pregnancy. However, the diet during this time should be consulted with a specialist to prevent deprivation of the necessary components to the mother and child.

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