The benefits of exercise during pregnancy are well documented. Numerous studies demonstrate a positive effect on both an expectant mum’s health and her baby’s health. Pregnancy exercise does much more than improve a mother’s well-being – it can aid the development of your baby’s heart and brain too. If you’re struggling to find motivation, these facts about the benefits of pregnancy exercise may help get you started.
Why exercise in pregnancy?
The benefits of exercise during pregnancy are becoming increasingly evident. Pregnancy exercise can improve an expectant mum’s experience of pregnancy in many ways. Studies show that exercising mothers:
- Experience less
lowerback pain, pregnancy constipation and tiredness
- Are 30% less likely to develop gestational diabetes
- Are less likely to need an unplanned caesarean
- Experience fewer incidences and reduced severity of depression
- Gain less weight during pregnancy
- Are less likely to develop urinary incontinence
- Have reduced incidents of pregnancy constipation
- Less pregnancy tiredness
- May have shorter labour
The benefits for your baby could last them a lifetime. Babies born to mothers who exercise in pregnancy are more likely to:
- Develop a healthier heart with a lower resting heart rate after birth
- Be born at what is considered a ‘normal’ birth weight, rather than overweight
- Be born with more mature brains and are quicker to develop neurologically
- Experience a reduced risk of respiratory distress at birth (if born to high-risk mothers)
- Less maternal stress could reduce
impacton immune system development
If you’re feeling motivated then get going! Just be sure to speak to your doctor or midwife before you begin.
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