Benefits of Exercising While Pregnant

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You all know that exercise is great for you and your body but some are unaware of the huge benefits exercise provides to your baby if you are pregnant.  The benefits of exercising while pregnant for the mother includes helping keep the back and stomach muscles toned and strong.  Based upon that benefit it also helps minimize any stretch marks during and after the duration of the pregnancy.

Exercising will also minimize the physical discomforts of pregnancy such as fatigue, nausea, leg cramps, backaches, etc..  In addition, there is a much lower rate of having to have a c-section performed if you exercise.  Then there are the obvious benefits of helping build stamina for labor and delivery and helping to maintain muscle tone and decrease additional fat stores.  So based upon those benefits alone, why not exercise while pregnant.  (Keep in mind though as with anyone starting an exercise program check with your doctor for clearance on what forms of exercise are feasible).

Now that some of the benefits have been mentioned for the expecting mother let's get into the benefits for the baby.  Some of the main benefits for the baby include decreased fat mass, improved stress tolerance, advanced neurobehavorial maturation, improved fetal growth, improved placental functional capacity circulation and gas exchange, increased nutrient delivery, and increased fetal body mass.  So with all that said there are benefits all-around for both the mother and the baby.  As long your doctor gives you a go ahead to workout get exercising to help improve your health and most importantly your babies health!

Sternfeld B. Physical Activity and Pregnancy Outcome.  Review and recommendations, Sports Med 2007



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