There are a number of effective antenatal exercise programmes that are low impact and will cause no major stress to your joints and muscles – and they offer numerous physical and emotional benefits.

Yoga or Pilates

  • Opens the pelvis to enable a (hopefully!) shorter and more active labour
  • Increases strength and control of the pelvic floor muscles
  • Teaches the mind and body how to relax
  • Strengthens and lengthens the spinal and abdominal muscles, increasing flexibility
  • Provides an intense body workout in a resistance-free environment
  • Is sociable and provides a great way to meet other expectant mums!
  • Is for anyone – it doesn’t matter what your fitness level is.

Swimming and aquanatal

  • A safe way to stay fit in pregnancy and being low impact, it reduces the risk of injury
  • Improves circulation
  • Increases muscle tone and strength
  • Builds stamina – very important for labour!
  • Can help ease some pregnancy symptoms, including backache and swelling and cramping legs

Why choose a pregnancy-focussed exercise class?

Firstly, it’s another great place to meet other mums-to-be (outside of your antenatal classes). But more importantly, your body undergoes many changes in pregnancy. If your instructor doesn’t understand these changes, you might end up with an unnecessary injury – or be pushed too hard which could lead to dizziness and fainting. Pregnancy-focused classes will be tailored to meet your varying needs as a soon-to-be mum.

See Changes to your body: the effect of exercise in pregnancy for more information.

If you do not want to join a pregnancy-focused exercise class, a good 30 minute walk is another safe way to stay fit and healthy in pregnancy.

Information provided by Fit 2 Drop

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The information contained above is provided for information purposes only. The contents of this article are not intended to amount to advice, and you should not rely on any of the contents of this article. Professional advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from taking any action as a result of the contents of this article. New Life Classes disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on any of the contents of this article.