Pregnancy and Pilates
Keeping up with an exercise program can be difficult when you're pregnant, and you may find yourself avoiding it altogether, especially during the first trimester when you may be feeling nauseated and tired. One easy way to stay active is with Pilates, a mind/body method of exercise that strengthens the most important muscles you'll use during pregnancy and labor: your deep abdominals, back muscles and pelvic floor. It's also a great choice for those days when you want to exercise but don't feel like pushing yourself too hard.
You probably know that Pilates is the latest craze to hit gyms everywhere, but what you may not know is that Pilates is a great exercise for pregnant women. The dynamic moves challenge you by helping build muscular endurance (you'll need lots of that for labor and delivery!), flexibility and, most importantly, good balance, something you'll need as pregnancy progresses. So is Pilates for you? Let's find out!
Pilates requires concentration on breathing, balance and movement patterns. Exercises are generally performed with very few repetitions, but each one is precise, controlled and moves through several planes of motion. Definitely a case of quality and not just quantity. As well as providing maximum support and challenge, Pilates is a safe and effective choice during pregnancy.
You may already be feeling back strain as you get further along in pregnancy. Pilates is ideal for recruiting those deep core muscles that help support your spine while releasing already overworked and fatigued muscles. This helps improve body alignment and posture so you experience less pain.