Updated: Aug 29
Staying in shape when you are pregnant can be very challenging. If you are plagued with morning sickness, just getting through the day can feel like climbing a mountain. But your fitness level can be the key to a safer, easier delivery, not to mention a faster post-partum recovery. Here are a couple of great articles about that:
If you enjoy fitness, and you want to continue any form of exercise including Pilates while pregnant, see our videos below. But here are a few key safety protocols to be aware of with any exercise, along with whatever cautions or restrictions your doctor may recommend:
Exercise can continue pretty normally but reduce or eliminate any inversion exercises (such as Short Spine Stretch in Pilates).
Discontinue any work lying on your belly
Discontinue inner thigh exercises with heavy resistance (i.e., squeezing an exercise ring)
Discontinue or limit to 5 minutes any exercise on your back. Optionally, you can use a wedge pillow to elevate your heart higher than your hips when lying on your back but continue the 5 minute limit.
Limit spinal rotation
Focus on pelvic stability – light abdominal activation
Focus on gluteal, quad and hamstring strengthening (which helps stabilize the pelvis)
Focus on working the upper back and arms to prevent poor posture and neck strain when nursing
In general, don’t over-do any exercises and don’t exercise to exhaustion. Drink plenty of water before, during and after exercising.
PLEASE NOTE: If you are experiencing a high-risk pregnancy, DO NOT BE CASUAL ABOUT WORKING OUT. FOLLOW YOUR DOCTORS EXPLICIT DIRECTIONS ON WHAT IS AND IS NOT ACCEPTABLE ACTIVITY FOR YOUR SITUATION.
If you are having a normal, healthy pregnancy and want to stay in the best shape possible, Ashley Monroe of MOVE Studios in Denver, CO has put together some great workouts. Pregnancy and Pilates go together as do Pregnancy and Fitness so jump in! You can start slowly with her Pregnancy Fitness: Workout with Blocks Tutorial, move up to the Work out with Blocks Full Speed when ready, and add an extra challenge with her Pregnancy Fitness: Workout with Physioball. If you need motivation, nobody will motivate you like @AshleyMorganMonroe! And if you are struggling with an unstable pelvis including low back and hip pain, check out her Finding and Maintaining Neutral Spine during pregnancy video, which features suggestions on ways to release and re-stabilize your pelvis during this challenging time.
You can check out all the videos below, and you can reach Ashley with questions at email@example.com. And remember, if you love the workouts you can still do them after delivery. Better yet, join Ashley, Larissa or Lindsey post-partum, from the convenience of you home, for live, real-time classes through MOVE Studios so you can take care of your new baby AND yourself. You can see our full schedule HERE. You can also join our 8-week Functional Pfilates Pelvic Floor Conditioning class 3 times a year before or after birth to keep your pelvic floor in the best shape for long-term health. You can find that schedule under WORKSHOPS.
Enjoy these great videos and enjoy your pregnancy!