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Staying Active in Pregnancy: Safe Exercise Routines and Their Benefits


Pregnancy is a time of profound transformation, not only emotionally but physically. While the importance of rest cannot be overstated, staying active also plays a pivotal role in ensuring a healthy pregnancy journey. As an obstetrician, I’ve observed firsthand the myriad benefits of exercise during pregnancy. Here’s a primer on safe exercise routines and their advantages for expectant mothers.

Why Exercise During Pregnancy?

  • Boosts Mood: Exercise releases endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals. This can help alleviate mood swings and elevate your spirits.
  • Reduces Pregnancy Discomforts: Regular activity can ease back pain, improve posture, and reduce discomforts like swelling.
  • Prepares for Childbirth: Strengthened muscles and improved stamina come in handy during labor and delivery.
  • Enhances Sleep: Physical activity often leads to better sleep, which is precious during pregnancy.
  • Reduces Risk of Excessive Weight Gain: This can lead to a smoother post-partum recovery and reduced risk of complications.
  • Lowers Gestational Diabetes Risk: Regular exercise can help regulate blood sugar levels.

Safe Exercise Routines for Expectant Mothers

  • Walking: A simple yet effective way to stay active. It’s low-impact and can be easily incorporated into daily routines.
  • Prenatal Yoga: Specially designed for expectant mothers, prenatal yoga offers flexibility, strength, and relaxation.
  • Swimming and Water Aerobics: The buoyancy of the water eases pressure on the joints while offering a full-body workout.
  • Stationary Bicycling: This puts less stress on the joints while ensuring a good cardiovascular workout.
  • Low-Impact Aerobics: Opt for classes specifically designed for pregnant women, ensuring safety for both you and the baby.
  • Pilates: Focuses on strengthening the core, including pelvic muscles, which can be beneficial during delivery.

Things to Remember

  • Stay Hydrated: Drink plenty of water before, during, and after exercising.
  • Warm-up and Cool Down: This helps to prevent muscle strains.
  • Avoid Overexertion: Always listen to your body. If something feels off, stop.
  • Avoid High-Risk Activities: Steer clear of activities with a risk of falling or trauma to the abdomen, like skiing, horseback riding, or contact sports.
  • Consult Your Obstetrician: Before starting any exercise regimen, it’s essential to have a chat with your healthcare provider, especially if you have any complications or high-risk factors.


Staying active during pregnancy is a beautiful blend of self-care and nurturing your growing baby. With the right exercise routine, not only can you enjoy the myriad physical benefits, but you can also foster a deeper connection with your body and your little one on the way.

Your journey through pregnancy is as unique as you are. As you embrace each moment, remember to prioritize your well-being, seek guidance, and celebrate the incredible strength of your body.


You can make an appointment with Dr Kenny on 07 3188 5000.

This article is written to be informative and does not substitute seeking a professional consultation from a medical professional.

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Greenslopes Obstetrics & Gynaecology is closely aligned with the Greenslopes Private Hospital which opened Brisbane’s newest maternity facility in February 2013.

To speak directly with a team member please call 07 3188 5000