Exercises during pregnancy benefits not just the expectant mother, but also the growing baby. The main objective of ante-natal is to ease or prevent minor discomfort experienced by the mother, prepare her for labour and post natal periods, strengthening the pelvic floor muscles, maintaining the mother’s cardiovascular fitness and speedy recovery from pain.
These exercises are often modified according to the maternal symptoms and fatigue levels.
ANTE NATAL EXCERCISES
- Normal Squats: Stand with feet shoulder width apart and perform a squat with feet within the level of the knee. A support should always be there.
- Squats with wider base of support: Stand with feet wider apart. Perform a squat with hands raised in front. Support should be there.
- Ankle-foot pumps: Sit on a chair, the back rested. Start with one ankle and move it upwards downwards and then clockwise and anti-clockwise. Repeat at the other ankle. This helps in relieving the leg swelling and problems of leg cramps.
- Sit-to-stand: Sit on a chair with back rested and hands outstretched in front. Next stand, hold for 5 seconds and then sit back . Repeat 10 times.
- Bridging exercise: Lie down with knees bent. Lift your pelvis, hold for 5 sec and then repeat.
- Adductor Isometrics: Lie down with knees bent and a pillow placed between the knees. Press the pillow with both knees and hold for 5 seconds. Repeat 10 times.