What exercises are safe in pregnancy?
first trimester (up to 13 weeks)
The most common question people as me, is do I need to stop exercising as soon as I find out I’m pregnant?
The simple answer is no. As long as you’re a low-risk pregnancy, whatever level of exercise you were doing before conception is generally safe to continue until week 13 (some say week 16). Once you hit week 13, we recommend chatting to your GP or Obstetrician to get the all clear for a specialised prenatal program.
Because of the joys of the first trimester, a lot of women won’t feel well enough to exercise until after week 13 (I certainly didn't), and if that’s you, don’t worry! The most important thing is to listen to your body. Rest when you need, exercise when you want, and eat all the food.
Second trimester (weeks 13-26)
Once you hit trimester 2 - hopefully you're feeling a little more human & ready to start exercising again. Some exercises that are safe in your second trimester include:
- Side lying exercises - clams, straight leg extensions etc
- Squats & lunges - up to 90 degrees, have a wall or chair handy for balance!
- Upper body exercises - chest press/fly, tricep extensions, shoulder rotations, rows
third Trimester (weeks 27-40)
In the third trimester, things start to become more difficult again. Your relaxin hormone is circulating, making you more prone to strains. The focus of your third trimester should be strength.
- Strengthening your glutes & back is key. A lot of pressure is put on your back and glute muscles due to the weight of the baby
- Shallow squats & lunges are still OK in your third trimester, as with all prenatal exercises we would recommend having a chair or wall nearby for balance
- Upper body exercises - particularly focusing on your arms, shoulders & back. Once you have the baby you're going to be carrying around a 4-10KG weight for most of your day so it's time to start preparing.