At The FITMUMS PHYSIO, Amy, our qualified physiotherapist in women’s health, offers a great range of exercise and fitness classes designed to meet the changing needs of women’s bodies during pregnancy.
Regular exercise and physical activity has been proven to help pregnant women feel more energetic, sleep better and cope with the many unexpected changes and emotions felt during pregnancy.
It is recommended to seek professional guidance from a trained professional such as our Physio Amy, who specialises in women’s health.
Amy will guide you in your fitness journey while pregnant, ensuring your movement techniques are correct and that all exercises are safe for you and your baby.
Our small class sizes give you the opportunity to safely enjoy exercise while also meeting other mums to be in a fun and supportive environment.
Below is a list of the benefits associated with exercise during pregnancy:
- Boost a mother’s immune-system which also benefits her baby
- More efficiently deliver blood and oxygen to the heart and brain, enhancing concentration and energy-levels.
- Help to manage or prevent gestational diabetes.
- More effectively control weight gain, which – in addition to physical benefits – enhances body image, confidence, and self-awareness.
- Improve posture, resulting in fewer aches and pains.
- Aid in postpartum recovery.
- Decrease incidence of falls.
- Reduce stress, anxiety, and insomnia, leading to an overall improvement in sleeping patterns and mood balance.
- A larger placenta develops, which increases the capacity to exchange oxygen, CO2 and nutrients with the growing baby.
- Increase the cardiovascular capacity of the baby.
During Labor and Delivery, FITMUMs Experience…
- An easier adaptation to the lower-intensity endurance component of early labor.
- Shorter first and second stages of labor.
- Enhanced pain tolerance.
- Increased stamina for labor and delivery, with less perceived exertion during labor.
- Lower incidences of intervention during labor.
- Good pelvic muscle tone – helpful for postpartum recovery and good continence health.
The following explains some of the important areas we focus on in our FITMUMs Classes:
Core Strength: for pregnant women, strengthening their core muscles, including their pelvic floor, has become highly important in recent years. Back ache, postural problems, continence and general recovery after birth can all be made far more manageable by keeping both your core and pelvic floor strong. Attending either our FITMUMs group pregnancy exercise classes which involve a combination of general strength, cardio and Pilates exercises, or working 1:1 with Amy our Physiotherapist, to guide you through the correct movements, will all help with developing and maintaining your core strength throughout your pregnancy.
Lower Body Strength: during pregnancy a woman naturally gains weight – not only are they carrying a growing human being but they often retain more fluid due to increased blood flow within the body. This means their body will become heavier and by the end of the last trimester, on average, a healthy , pregnant woman will have gained 12.5-15kg. As a result a woman’s legs, lower back and buttock muscles will all get more of a workout sitting down, standing up and just moving around on a daily basis. So it is highly important to continue to stimulate and strengthen these muscles to ensure they cope with this increased load. Many women also find that during labor they prefer to be up, moving around, changing positions and sometimes even squatting. So to ensure their bodies can cope with these activities during labor, lower body strength should be a priority during pregnancy. Once the baby arrives, a mother will be doing lots of lifting from awkward angles, getting up and down from the floor and carrying a capsule around, so along with a strong core, they’ll need to learn to lift with their legs to protect their back. Our FITMUMs classes entail many versions of body weight squats, Fitball squats, and lunges to assist mums to be to increase the strength of their lower body.
Upper Body Strength: adding to a woman’s weight gain during pregnancy is her growing bust and so does the pressure on their postural muscles in their mid back, neck and shoulders. Also once the baby arrives, holding, breastfeeding and lifting uses a surprising amount of upper body strength. At the FITMUMs Program our women are encouraged to continue working on their upper body strength and posture to ensure they don’t develop neck and upper back pain once the baby arrives. Postural work with hand weights like press ups, bicep curls, seated rows, and challenging movements incorporating a Fitball can really help make you more able to cope.
Controlling Weight Gain: pregnant ladies are to remember weight gain is NORMAL during pregnancy, so don’t stress about every kilo! But keeping a healthy weight is important for your health and the baby’s. Cardiovascular exercises such as walking, riding a stationary bike, and low impact aerobics can assist with controlling a woman’s weight gain and ensuring their heart and lung remain healthy throughout the pregnancy, which will benefit their babies health as well as assist them during labor.