During Pregnancy, There Are A Number Of Exercises You Can Do To Build Strength

During Pregnancy, There Are A Number Of Exercises You Can Do To Build Strength

During your pregnancy, if you’re having a normal, healthy pregnancy, you may want to add some low-intensity strength training and daily exercise to your daily schedule.

Taking up new or strenuous sports during pregnancy isn’t a good idea, but you can strengthen the muscles in your upper and lower body with the permission of your health care provider — you’re going to need them during pregnancy!

When you are pregnant, you may find that you are hunching over and rounding your shoulders due to the extra weight you carry in your belly and breasts.

You can improve your posture and make it easier for you to carry your baby by developing the muscles in your back and shoulders, but that is not the only benefit of developing these muscles.

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Your body will be amazed at how often you will need to use upper body strength just to get through the day after you have given birth to your baby.

When your muscles are prepared for it, feeding your baby, lifting her onto the changing table a dozen times a day, and carrying endless baskets of laundry will be so much more comfortable for you if you are well-trained.

As well as a strong pair of legs, you will also need a strong pair of arms. You must remember that your legs are the foundation of your body: they support your belly, your baby, and your back.

When you are pregnant and your abdominal muscles are stretched to their utmost limits, you will need strong legs in order to support your growing belly.

It is ideal for your upper and lower body to do moves that require you to use several muscles at the same time because in just a couple of moves you will be able to work most of your major muscles in your body.

There are some simple, yet effective exercises you can do to strengthen your upper and lower body.

It is recommended that you do 8 to 15 repetitions of each exercise at least twice a week. Start with one set, and then work your way up to two sets.

If you are pregnant and need extra support during the leg exercises, hold on to the back of a chair if you need additional support as your pregnancy progresses.

I recommend that you walk briskly for five to ten minutes before each workout in order to warm up your body.

In these exercises, you will use inexpensive equipment that can be found at regular retail outlets that you can use for these exercises.

Pregnancy exercises that are best

Overhead press

The seated high row is a very effective exercise for strengthening the lats and upper back. Sit on the floor with your legs out in front and your knees slightly bent.

Keep your spine in a neutral (straight) position at all times. It is a good idea to wrap an exercise tube around your feet at the arches.

It is recommended that you cross the tube so it forms an “X” over your legs, and hold a handle in each hand as you do this.

Keep your elbows up and back as you pull back the handles, rather than letting your elbows hang out to the sides as you do so.

Your upper arms should be perpendicular to the floor, with your shoulder blades down, while you do this. As soon as you have pulled back as far as you can, “squeeze” your shoulder blades together as hard as you can.

Then return to the starting position and repeat the process once more.

Alternating biceps curl

In order to perform the overhead press (which strengthens your deltoids and triceps), you should sit in a chair or on a bench with your spine in a neutral position.

The first step is to hold a light dumbbell in each hand (1, 2, 3, or 5 pounds). The weights should be at shoulder height and slightly to the side of your shoulders when you bend your elbows.

Keeping your elbows straight and not locked, exhale and press straight up and overhead, keeping your arms straight and not locked.

Make sure you lower your body with control. Take a deep breath and repeat it as many times as you can.

Make sure that your spine and neck are in a neutral position, and that your shoulders are relaxed. Keep your neck from jutting forward at any time. Repeat the process.

Dancer’s plié

The dancer’s plié is designed to strengthen the quadriceps, hamstrings, inner thighs, buttocks, calves, and shins, increase leg circulation, and improve balance.

Hold a five to eight-pound dumbbell in each hand. Then stand with your back facing the back of a chair, your feet more than hip-width apart, and your knees and feet turned out comfortably.

Maintain a relaxed posture while contracting your abdominals and lifting your chest. It is important that you bend your elbows so that the weights are at each shoulder, palms facing inwards.

It is important not to use weights if you need the support of a chair – you should hold on to the back of the chair instead – and bend your knees while keeping your feet on the floor, spine straight, and your body weight evenly distributed over your heels.

Your torso should be lowered as far as possible without changing the position of your back or hips at the same time.

It is important to straighten your knees, squeeze your inner thighs, and then continue to rise up onto the balls of your feet without stopping, continuing without pausing.

Repeat the process by lowering your feet and bringing them back up. I would recommend skipping the part of the sequence where you have to stand on your toes in the later months if you get calf cramps from doing so.

Skater’s lunge

As you stand with your hands on your hips or hold onto the back of a chair, perform the skater’s lunge (which strengthens the quadriceps, hamstrings, buttocks, upper hips, and inner thighs).

Then, shift your weight to your left foot so only the toes of your right foot touch the ground; your right knee should be bent at the knee.

Keeping your abdominals tight to maintain a neutral spine, bend your left knee as you push your right foot out to the side at a diagonal to your body while maintaining a neutral spine.

In order to return your right foot to the start position, you need to straighten your left knee at the same time.

Then switch the legs and repeat the process. The same should be done with the other leg as well.

Leg lift crawl

The leg lift crawl (strengthens the buttocks and the hamstrings) is performed on all fours. While you are doing the exercise, keep your weight evenly distributed and keep your arms straight as you do so.

(This will encourage your baby to rest in the correct head-down position as you do the exercise.) Slowly raise your left knee and bring it toward your elbow, then straighten your leg and extend it out and back as you do the exercise.

It is important not to lock your knees or arch your back. Hold this position for 5 seconds. Then return to the beginning and repeat the process five to ten times. Repeat the process with the other leg.

Workout tips

Always exhale on exertion.
Focus on keeping your abdominal muscles tight, which helps keep your spine in a neutral (not arched, not hunched) position.
Never lock your knees; they should always be in a semi-relaxed position.