Exercises during pregnancy are not only important to keep you and your baby healthy but also to prepare the body for the challenges of labour. Regular exercising prepares the muscles and ligaments in the pelvis to go through delivery with minimal effort. Prenatal exercises also aid in positioning the baby optimally for childbirth.
However, each expecting mother should be cautious of the things they do during pregnancy. So, it would be prudent to consult a doctor before attempting any of these exercises.
This exercise stimulates and expands muscles in your back, thighs, and pelvis and corrects your posture. It also keeps your pelvic joints resilient, increases blood flow to your lower body, and helps in delivery.
First, sit on the floor with your back straight and with the bottom of your feet together and your knees dropped comfortably. As you press both knees toward the floor using your elbows, you should feel a stretch in your inner thighs. Don't bounce your knees up and down
quickly. Use a wall to support your back if you find it difficult at first to keep your back straight. Hold the position for 10 seconds and repeat the stretch five or ten times.
You’ll find this exercise is easy. Your body will be more flexible during pregnancy, and this exercise profits your newfound flexibility.
The pelvic floor muscles support the pelvic organs: the uterus, bladder, and bowels. If you exercise them, you’ll ease many troubles of late pregnancy, such as haemorrhoids and leakage of urine. First, try to stop urine flow when sitting on the toilet without stretching your abdominal, buttock, or thigh muscles. When you can start and stop urinating or feel the vaginal muscle contract, you are using your pelvic floor muscle.
You can do Kegel exercises in two ways. To do slow Kegels, contract the pelvic floor muscle and hold for 15 seconds. Then rest and repeat up to 10 times. To do fast Kegels, rapidly contract and relax your pelvic floor muscle 25 to 50 times. Next, rest for 5 seconds and
repeat the setup four times.
Pelvic tilts stimulate abdominal muscles, help reduce backache during pregnancy and labour and ease delivery. This exercise can also increase the flexibility of your back and ward off back pain. You can do pelvic tilts in many positions, but down on your hands and knees is the easiest way to learn it. First, get comfortable on your hands and knees, keeping your head in line with your back. Next, pull in your stomach and arch your back upward. Hold this position for a few seconds. Then rest your stomach and back, keeping your back flat and not allowing your stomach to drop. Repeat this exercise three to five times. Gradually work your way up.
Squatting is helpful during labour because it opens the pelvic outlet an extra quarter to half an inch, allowing more room for the baby to be conceived. But squatting is tiring, so you should practice it frequently during pregnancy to strengthen the muscles needed. An exercise called a wall slide is helpful. Stand with your back straight against a wall. Place your feet shoulder-width apart and about five inches from the wall, and keep your arms relaxed. Slowly slide down the wall to a squatting position, keeping your back straight until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Hold the position for 10 seconds, and slowly slide back to a standing position. Repeat five or ten times.
Breathing exercises can help you be calm and also manage pain during labour. In addition, doing them regularly makes it easier for you when the time arrives to conceive.