Many health professionals recommend that pregnant women maintain some form of physical activity to ensure their daily routine isn’t affected by the pregnancy. Exercise during pregnancy makes women sleep better, reduces their stress, prevents excessive fat accumulation, and makes it easier for the body to bounce back after the delivery.
This is why more pregnant women are working with certified personal trainers to stay on top of their health. This could be your opportunity to expand your expertise and capture a thriving niche. So here’s all you need to know about exercises for different stages of pregnancy.
Additionally, you can check out W.I.T.S Education’s pregnancy client programming course if you want to take up any specialization to train pregnant clients.
How Are Pregnancy Workouts Different Than Regular Ones?
If women are on a lighter workout routine, they don’t need to modify their workouts much during pregnancy. But if they’re doing weight training and other heavier exercises, they need to switch to lighter ones. The reason is that the body needs a lot more oxygen during pregnancy and the expanding belly adds extra pressure on the lungs and other organs. So the organs end up working harder.
If in this scenario, the body is put under additional strain by exercises, things can get complicated. Moreover, if a woman pushes her body too much, it also affects the baby’s health.
Workouts For First Trimester
Each trimester is different, and the body’s changes are also different. In the first trimester, women usually don’t feel many changes in their body and hence don’t need too many special workouts. However, the trainer should still refrain from heavier workouts.
Aerobics are the best options to get the heart rate up without doing a lot, and for pregnant women, this reduces the warmup time. However, due to the pressure on their lungs, trainers should recommend a lighter version of aerobics to pregnant women.
So instead of high-intensity workouts, they could suggest water aerobics which reduces the stress on the joints and allow the women to move more freely.
Walking And Running
Walking is another excellent cardiovascular workout for pregnant women. Since the belly hasn’t grown a lot, women can take part in exercise walking and running without getting too exhausted.
Exercise walking is a form of walking that involves rapid movements, but it’s still lower than jogging and running. These exercises can be done outdoors with plenty of fresh air or indoors on a treadmill for more comfort.
Many women pick yoga during their pregnancy because of its ability to release stress, ease the joints, and improve flexibility. But the kind of yoga they should do depends on their fitness levels and health.
This is why trainers generally go for easier poses for pregnant women. Poses such as the camel pose and cat pose are great for releasing stress, and relaxing muscles without straining other parts of the body, mainly the lungs.
Workouts For Second Trimester
During the second trimester, the body has undergone considerable changes, and the belly is big enough to start affecting the lungs and other organs. Moreover, women also feel additional pressure on the pelvic area, so they can’t move too much. So the exercises recommended by trainers should be in accordance with these changes.
Since it’s not recommended for pregnant women to run during the second trimester, jogging is the next best option. But even with that, the trainers need to be careful and not push them too hard. So slow jogging is commonly recommended, which is faster than walking but slower than jogging. It’s good to get the heart rate up so the clients can move on to the next exercises.
Light Outdoor Workouts
Normally workouts that increase the body’s oxygen absorption are the top choice for pregnant women. But trainers can take it up a notch and shift the workout session outside where the clients can get plenty of fresh air and pump up their bodies with oxygen. This oxygen is also good for the baby and relaxes the mother. Trainers usually prefer workouts such as yoga and aerobics.
Women aren’t hampered that much during the second trimester by their bellies, so light swimming is a great workout option. The density of the water pushes the women to work harder while their joints and muscles sustain less stress. Moreover, a workout in water also soothes any underlying muscle main such as knee pain that the client might be feeling due to additional weight.
Workouts For Third Trimester
In the final trimester, the internal organs are pretty much squished against the growing uterus. Moreover, the belly also puts a lot of strain on the spine and the pelvic floor, making it difficult for the clients to sit or stand quickly. During this time, group exercise sessions are more favorable for the clients. You can learn more workout routines through W.I.T.S Education’s pregnancy course.
Pelvic Floor Exercises
Pelvic floor exercises such as the pelvic curl and pelvic brace help ease pelvic pain and improve bladder strength. The pelvic curl is also helpful in relaxing the spine and the surrounding muscles, making it easier for the clients to go about their daily routine without any issues.
Normal walking is good for women in the third trimester, but if they take it up a notch, it’ll improve oxygen absorption in the body. Brisk walking is a faster version of walking, usually at a speed of around 3 miles per hour. Brisk walking stretches the legs and relaxes the knees, which can be painful due to the additional weight.
After a workout session, the trainer needs to help the client’s body return to normal. Stretching is the best way to do this. It relaxes the body and releases any stress accumulated during the workout session. Moreover, it’s also good for the joints and improves their mobility.
Expand your career and get in-demand certifications with W.I.T.S. Education. W.I.T.S. is a fitness training organization that offers a number of fitness specializations, including medical fitness trainers, group exercise instructors, senior fitness trainers, and many more.
The institute is accredited by the N.C.C.A. and the American Council of Education, allowing college students to earn course credits. Moreover, the organization has the largest network of universities and colleges.
With W.I.T.S. Education, you can enroll in hybrid courses with online lectures and hands-on interactive labs. So hurry up, check out their courses and join W.I.T.S. today!