Pregnancy Toning Exercises

birth-ball

The best and easiest exercises for late pregnancy.

As part of your daily exercise plan, it is important to include some stretching and toning exercises to your routine. The third trimester is the most uncomfortable period of pregnancy. Not to mention, labors can be long and ardous. Performing a few basic exercises each day will help you maintain some comfort during late pregnancy as well as help you reduce fatigue and muscle aches during labor. Here are some easy exercises you can do every day or several times each week:

1. Pelvic Tilts

this is a great exercise to round out your back, stretch your lower back muscles, reduce back pain and rotate a posterior baby. This can be done on all fours (also called the angry cat position) by rotating your pelvis forward; your back will be rounded as you do this. Hold for a few seconds and return your back to a level position without letting your back sag in the middle. You can also do pelvic tilts by standing with your legs slightly bent and tilting your pelvis slightly forward.

2. Semi-Squatting

This exercise helps to strengthen the inner thighs to help during pushing. Stand behind a chair and bend your knees into a partial squat. Hold for about 10 seconds and increase to about 60 seconds over time.

3. Tailor SItting

Sit on the floor “Indian style” or for more stretching of the inner thighs, put the soles of your feet together and slow bring your knees down toward the floor. You will feel a big stretch deep inside your inner thighs.

4. Kegels

This is essentially a “squeezing” of the pelvic floor. To help you find the place, stop the flow of urine while going to the bathroom. Find other times during the day to practice holding those muscles up and count for 5 seconds – working your way to 20 seconds. This can helpful for pushing (knowing when your pelvic floor is relaxed) in recovery to bring circulation to that area. It is also helpful in preventing bladder control problems later in life and in recovery from a tear or episiotomy.

5. Straddling a birth ball 

This is a comfortable position while you are watching tv or on the computer. It helps to rotate and relax the pelvic floor and can be used in labor to rotate a posterior baby.

Do you have other exercises that helped you? Tell us about them.

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