During pregnancy, many women are haunted by stiffness, swelling, pain in muscles and joints. To alleviate the condition of the pregnant woman, you can use gentle stretching exercises, which have a complex effect on the body of the expectant mother. Such complexes should be properly performed under the guidance of an experienced professional, who will be able to monitor the correctness of the movements. If a woman, who is going to become a mother, before the onset of pregnancy, practiced on her own at home or attended a sports club, it will not be a big difficulty for her to learn the peculiarities of special stretching techniques for pregnant women.
Such exercises will have a beneficial effect on the female body and contribute to its preparation for the upcoming birth. The benefits of exercises are the intake of large amounts of oxygen in the blood, relaxing the clamps in the muscles and increasing the level of the hormone of happiness.
Stretching exercises: Rules for doing them
Performing stretching exercises for pregnant women should strictly follow the safety technique, because during this period, the woman’s body is especially vulnerable and it is possible to traumatize tendons or joints. First of all, when practicing stretching, a woman should use special aids, if previously stretching was out of her sphere of interest. To reduce the risk of injury and isolation of individual muscle groups and maintain body balance such attributes as bands, bricks, mats are useful.
It is important to observe a measure and not to overload the body. Usually engaged in a day not more than an hour. It is better to give stretch marks for pregnant women in the morning or evening. Pregnant in this case it is necessary to keep under control your well-being. If there are contraindications, you can not start stretching. Whether there are such contraindications or not, can be determined only by a doctor, who conducts pregnancy, with whom it is necessary to consult before starting classes.
What should be kept in mind when exercising stretching
Getting ready to do stretching for pregnant women should be aware that even healthy women during pregnancy at times may feel weakness, fatigue, malaise. Excessive loads, even if we are talking about light stretching, at such times is better to exclude. Experts recommend starting stretching for pregnant women with a light warm-up, including walking briskly in place or shallow squats, a set of scrolling movements of all joints.
It is worth bearing in mind that stretching for pregnant women and for women in the normal state are significantly different. All deep and heavy bends, sudden movements, too active squats during pregnancy in any trimester are absolutely prohibited. You should be especially careful when stretching in the supine position. This posture during pregnancy is excluded for many women, because it puts excessive pressure on the uterus and the fetus.
Stretching exercises benefit
Pregnant stretching can bring both pleasure and benefit at the same time. Training usually lasts about an hour and includes leisurely movements in a group fitness club or alone at home with relaxing music. The benefits are undeniable:
- During stretching, muscles are saturated with oxygen-carrying blood, which is very good for the fetus as a prevention of oxygen deprivation;
- The emphasis on the spine helps to relieve pressure on the lower back and back, which bear the brunt of the load from the center of gravity, shifted forward;
- Improved stretching of the posterior surface of the legs can solve the problem of tying shoelaces, which has become difficult due to an overgrown tummy;
- a great help during labor will be breathing relaxation techniques used in stretching;
- Regular exercise stretching had a positive impact on the birth process, significantly increasing the elasticity of muscles, so necessary in childbirth.
Despite all the obvious benefits that ensures pregnancy stretching, you should keep in mind that these exercises in the period of pregnancy may have contraindications and limitations, and they may depend on the current trimester.
The main contraindications to exercise stretching for pregnant women, in which exercise should be excluded, experts include the following conditions:
- Tests with results that do not correspond to the norm;
- The presence of vaginal discharge;
- a history of miscarriages or premature births;
- Placenta previa or premature placenta aging;
- Pulling and aching pain in the lower back and lower abdomen;
- Threat of miscarriage or premature birth;
- Bleeding or threatened bleeding;
- A weak cervix;
- History of any abnormalities of the fallopian tubes and uterus.
First of all, when stretching for pregnant women, you should exclude the supine position and any pressure on the abdomen. This applies especially to movements with the knees and hips pressed against the abdomen. It is worth avoiding exercises that involve the abdominal abs, as well as twisting movements. The spine should be kept straight or with a slight natural bend. Bends are performed without jerks, not sharply, taking into account the nuances of a woman’s body, excluding body bends downward toward the legs.
Exercises such as “bridge” and reverse “bridge” are prohibited for pregnant women. If during stretching exercises a woman feels excessive uterine tone, the load should immediately stop and relax completely. In all kinds of forbidden waving and jumping, stretching exercises should be performed gently, without weights and loads. It is worth immediately stopping them, if dizziness, increased heart rate, shortness of breath appeared – lie down and relax.
Stretching exercises: first trimester
The possibility and intensity of stretching exercises vary depending on the term of carrying the baby. If we are talking about the 1st trimester, experts recommend excluding them at all. This is due to the fact that during this period many women have a very high risk of miscarriage, so in the first trimester you should pay maximum attention to your health and allow yourself physical activity in doses and with great care.
In the first 12 weeks abrupt hormonal changes in the body provoke frequent changes in blood pressure, mood changes, weight changes, the well-being also worsens. If during this period it is decided not to stop stretching exercises, it should be done very gently and carefully. The focus should be on the spine and upper limbs, completely excluding the load on the lower back and hips.
Stretching in the second and third trimesters
In the 2nd trimester of pregnancy, stretching exercises should be gentle and smooth. It is best to exercise in the morning hours, when the pregnant woman is usually still feeling well and quite active. As a basic in the 2nd trimester usually choose a set of exercises on special balls, stretching exercises for the lower back and spine. Twisting and loads on the abdomen should be excluded.
In the 3rd trimester, stretching for pregnant women can include a set of Kegel exercises. At this term, the expectant mother should be engaged in strengthening the perineal muscles to improve the passage of the baby through the birth canal and reduce the risk of tearing during childbirth. Women who do not ignore stretching also recover faster after childbirth. If there are no contraindications, in the 3rd trimester a woman can practice the same program as in the earlier terms, adding exercises lying on her side.