Exercising during pregnancy has a number of benefits, including:
- Fights fatigue
- Improves sleep quality
- Improves circulation
- Maintains cardiovascular fitness
- Guards against gestational diabetes
- Relieves stress
- Prevents and manages pregnancy related back pain and improves posture
However there are some associated risks. We recommend consulting with your medical practitioner before engaging in exercise and seeking support and guidance from an Accredited Exercise Physiologist to ensure that you and your baby stay safe and sound. It’s important to keep the following points in mind if you choose to exercise during your pregnancy:
- Hormonal effects on the body
- Effects of hormonal changes on your mood
- Structural changes – weight gain causes altered centre of gravity
- Your exercise routine prior to pregnancy – what did it look like?
- Increased hydration requirements due to increased blood flow
- Increased calorie requirements to ensure healthy weight gain
- Changes to your temperature regulation due to weight gain and increased blood flow
When can I start exercising during pregnancy?
You can start (or continue) exercising from conception. Scope offers personalised one-on-one and group classes that involve a combination of training techniques such as strength training, circuit training and Pilates. Prior to starting your pregnancy fitness classes, you should have a brief consultation with an Accredited Exercise Physiologist to ensure you are safe to start.
Postnatal exercise has been demonstrate in research to ensure a faster recovery. It is recommended that women commence exercise 6 weeks after giving birth. Postnatal exercise reduces the risk of post birth complications such as lower back pain and pelvic floor dysfunction (such as incontinence and prolapse). More importantly postnatal exercise gives you the strength and stamina to cope with the demands of motherhood.
The benefits include:
- Restore muscle strength
- Reduce risk of postnatal depression
- Improve pelvic floor strength
- Increase abdominal strength
- Improve energy levels and cardiovascular fitness levels
- And… It’s a great way to meet new mums!
Will I get my pre-pregnancy fitness back?
Yes, absolutely! With a well-structured postnatal exercise program there is no reason that you shouldn’t be able to work back to the same level of fitness. It is however important to remember that your body has undergone a lot of stress and therefore a rehabilitation program will be the safest and most helpful way to target your journey back to fitness.
What does a typical session involve?
A typical session involves a one-on-one or group exercise session designed specifically for you by our Accredited Exercise Physiologist. The modes or exercises vary between Pilates, strength training and cardiovascular circuit training which typically involves the use of a fitball/gymball, floor/mat work, as well as stretchbands and therabands for various strengthening and flexibility exercises.