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Pregnant friend - advice on regular exercise

Posted: Mon Dec 19, 2011 6:21 am
by RobertB
Good Morning,

I have a friend who has recently been blessed/cursed ( :razz: ) with pregnancy!

She has asked me if I could have a quick check around to see what the do's and dont's are of exercise whilst pregnant.

I said I'm fairly sure nearly everything is fine as long as she takes it easy and leaves plenty in the tank, but I said very sternly I wasn't going to advise her in any shape or form since I simply do not have the education to give her this kind of advice.

Could any of you please advise things to avoid - and suggest optimal exercises - the first thing that came to mind is swimming.

Cheers

Re: Pregnant friend - advice on regular exercise

Posted: Mon Dec 19, 2011 8:22 am
by Jungledoc
The main thing for her to avoid is a major change. If she has been sedentary, she should start with something pretty tame. If she has been doing something pretty tame, she should take up something not quite so tame. If she has been doing a more demanding exercise regimen, she should keep it up, for the most part. She may have to taper off somewhat the last few weeks of the pregnancy, depending on what it is. Activities that are high risk, contact sports, etc., of course should be modified for the safety of the "mother-baby pair". I can't think of any form of resistance exercise that I would discourage. Cleans and snatches will get tricky as time goes along, but other than that....

The next question will be about exercise for the baby. I recommend not forcing him or her into a strength training program until he or she learns to walk well. After that, go for it!

Re: Pregnant friend - advice on regular exercise

Posted: Mon Dec 19, 2011 12:18 pm
by Jason Nunn
Jungledoc wrote: I can't think of any form of resistance exercise that I would discourage. Cleans and snatches will get tricky as time goes along, but other than that....

The next question will be about exercise for the baby. I recommend not forcing him or her into a strength training program until he or she learns to walk well. After that, go for it!
Hahaha love it! The biggest problem I've had with training pregnant women is morning sickness. Other than that, be aware that her Relaxin (hormone) levels are going to be a little elevated so she'll have some extra hip mobility that she didn't have before. This could cause some issues doing squats.

Re: Pregnant friend - advice on regular exercise

Posted: Mon Dec 19, 2011 10:04 pm
by Jungledoc
I didn't say before, but I probably should have, that all I said was predicated on the assumption that she is reasonably healthy, and that the pregnancy is uncomplicated.

And a good point about increased mobility of joints. That will be more of a problem as she nears tearm.

Re: Pregnant friend - advice on regular exercise

Posted: Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:34 am
by robt-aus
recollection from memory of things Katrina stopped doing around 9 months ago:

1. crunches and any other kind of 'lay on your back and try and fold yourself' type activities - which I thought was excellent. bridges got a lot more deserved attention
2. attempting setting pbs in any exercises - that said she was crushed she couldn't take her deadlift over 60kgs.
3. jumping
4. anything new; that said, old included barbell squats, pushups (proper), dumbell snatches and kicking my ass. lovingly, of course.

things that didn't stop until recently:

gym visits involving anything but the above
big walks
carrying shopping
moving a lot

looking at some of our books (that i've been set as required reading :), squatting and being comfortable in and around those positions can be useful at delivery time as well.

my wife was and is fit, looks fit and has had an uncomplicated pregnancy. thank gosh. i unscientifically put it down to her being wonderful and us being very, very lucky. blessed, even.

Re: Pregnant friend - advice on regular exercise

Posted: Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:48 am
by RobertB
Thanks a lot guys, and congrats Robt-aus, can't say I don't envy you (I'm 28 now and your talk of a fit/healthy/active wife and child made me all broody and jealous :red: ) - she's (my friend) mostly a typical "Dont want to bulk" girl which is generally why I roll my eyes at her questions, but with that in mind - I guess cardio is ok too? she wont be doing 15kmph sprint work over broken bottles so discounting falling over.....

Re: Pregnant friend - advice on regular exercise

Posted: Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:40 am
by robt-aus
Thank you. we're kicking off in our mid thirties. when it's right, it's right.

I have to defer to Jason and Andy (jungledoc) on cardio in the general population - they have education, training, expertise and insight - I only know me and She. I suspect if your friend is already doing cardio type things, keep going. If she isn't, I suspect starting gentle is prudent. Stopping is best avoided. I've an unsubstantiated idea that if the pregnant body is fed, rested and kept in good condition there are fewer issues, much like any other physical stimulus requiring adaptation.

Re: Pregnant friend - advice on regular exercise

Posted: Tue Dec 20, 2011 11:18 am
by Jungledoc
Yep, what Robt said. Many women continue to run through much of their pregnancy. When the bounding baby starts bouncing too much it's time to put that on hold for a little while.

Re: Pregnant friend - advice on regular exercise

Posted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 2:44 am
by Magnus
I think she should try some basic yoga. Maybe google yoga for pregnant women for some exercises that can be done 10-15 minutes each day to relax the muscles in that part of the body. It is said to make the pregnancy much easier.