Congratulations, you’re expecting a little bundle of joy! You know to eat right and take your prenatal vitamins, but what about exercise? Most doctors agree that exercise during pregnancy is a good thing and safe for most healthy pregnant women to continue doing. So where to start? How about with some pregnancy pilates? Why you ask? Well, let me count the ways:
* Pilates focuses on strengthening your core, something essential for every expecting mother for a comfortable labor and delivery. Thanks to the hormone relaxin, and your baby growing, a lot of pressure is placed on a pregnant woman’s pelvic and abdominal muscles everyday. Pilates may help to stabilize those muscles which can help with, if nothing else, not peeing every time you sneeze!
* It’s very low-impact – no jumping around like in kickboxing class, or aches and pains of the knees like running may cause, making it one of the safer workouts for pregnant women.
* It’s easily modifiable – as your body changes throughout pregnancy, your workout routine may have to too. Luckily, pilates is very easy to customize, and most of the moves can be modified to accommodate your changing center of balance (not to mention curves!)
* While there are several back-lying positions, which some doctors and instructors may tell you to avoid after the first trimester, pilates is mainly made up of moves you do on your hands and knees – which is the ideal position for an expecting woman since it takes the strain off your back.
As always, check with your doctor before starting any new exercise regime. Also if you’ve never practice pilates before, check out a specifically prenatal pilates class first to get tips from the instructor on how to modify the most common exercises for the safest possible experience.