A whole lot of you love to stay in shape and fit during pregnancy, but there are exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
Pregnancy doesn’t mean you’d have to stop exercising entirely and watch yourself become a sack of potatoes. However, you have to stop some exercises and activities entirely and engage in the few that are marked safe for practice.
Let’s get to find out the activities and exercises that pose danger to you and your baby.
These are exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
15 Exercises to Avoid During Pregnancy
Not every exercise can still be seen as doable and fun once you get pregnant. However, some of them can still be done for just the first trimester and stopped thereafter.
1. Can I be Skipping While Pregnant?
Skipping is a full-body workout. In skipping, your abdominals are used to stabilize your body, and your legs and shoulders are used for jumping and turning the ropes respectively.
Skipping during pregnancy isn’t entirely bad. However, it depends on:
- The trimester of your pregnancy,
- The speed at which you skip, and
- The weight of the skipping rope.
During the first trimester of your pregnancy, you can do with some skipping with pretty light ropes and a normal pace. But, if you’re new to exercising and skipping, try to take it easy. It should only be to get you to breathe better and heat you up a little.
After the first trimester of your pregnancy, it’s best you avoid skipping.
2. Scuba Diving While Pregnant
Scuba diving is an activity or mode of underwater diving where you’d have to swim or stay underwater for long periods of time.
The aim of this is to experience and enjoy the beauty underwater. This made possible with the aid of an apparatus called a Scuba (stands for self-contained underwater breathing apparatus).
During pregnancy, you can swim, but not scuba diving.
This is because the pressure you experience while swimming is not the same as when you go scuba diving.
Is this pressure really the problem? Aren’t unborn children suspended in liquids, and as we all know, liquids are incompressible, no problem, right?
Well, first of all, just because liquid is incompressible doesn’t mean that liquid, and whatever is in it, isn’t influenced by the pressure.
And while studies of the effects of pressure on unborn children are limited, there have been some studies that point to a possible, negative effect.
A study compared 69 women who did not dive during their pregnancy to 109 women who did. The study showed a small, but statistically significant increase in birth defects.
The mothers that did not dive, reported no childbirth defects, whereas there was an occurrence in birth defects of 5.5 percent among the diving women.
This study was done as a survey. In itself, it has its limitations, and the sample was relatively small, so solid conclusions are a bit difficult to make.
3. Weight Lifting and Pregnancy
Weight lifting is an exercise to avoid during pregnancy, especially if you’ve never engaged in any form of weight lifting.
However, if you’ve been weight lifting before pregnancy, you can continue with light weights.
Here are a few things to put into consideration if you must lift weight:
- Avoid lifting while flat on your back. After the first trimester your pregnancy, lying on your back can put some pressure on a major vein. This vein is called the vena cava. When this pressure is exerted, it diminishes the blood flow to your brain and uterus.
- Watch the weights. Be really careful with free weights, prevent them from hitting your abdomen. You could use resistance bands instead, they offer different amounts of resistance and different ways to do your weight training with no risk to your belly.
- Use lighter weights, more reps. Use lighter weights and do more repetitions instead of using heavyweights. If you usually do leg presses with 30 pounds for 8 to 12 repetitions, try 15 pounds for 15 to 20 reps. Or if you typically do a chest press with 15 pounds for 8 to 12 reps, try 8 pounds for 15 to 20 reps.
- Listen to your body. The most important rule is to pay attention to what’s going on physically. When you begin to feel muscle strains or excessive fatigue, change the moves you’re doing and/or reduce the frequency of your workouts. Pregnancy isn’t the time to push yourself to yourself over your limits.
If you must lift weights then abide these. If you do abide by these, then, by all means, avoid lifting weights.
4. Are Double Leg Lifts Exercises to Avoid During Pregnancy?
This an abdominal exercise that has a great impact on the abdominal region. Double leg lifts may doable during the first and second month of your pregnancy, but after the first two months, it’s best you avoid.
It is best you avoid because at this point your enlarged uterus has the ability to compress your vena cava (this is the vein that carries blood to your heart). This, in turn, can be very dangerous to you and your fetus (baby).
So, after you have come to the end of your first trimester, as much as you can, avoid doing any exercises (like crunches) while lying face-up on your back.
Let’s see more exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
Amongst exercises to avoid during pregnancy, roller-blading is one of them. As you know, exercises and activities that are really rigorous and increase your chances of having a fall are not good for you during pregnancy.
It does not matter how good you were at roller-blading (you may have won a good medal) before you got pregnant, avoid this activity.
Chances are, that you could fall (owing that’s there has been a change in your weight and centre of gravity). Also, the rapid change in direction while rolling, the jarring motions, could cause mild abdominal trauma.
Roller-blading is an exercise you should avoid during pregnancy.
6. Can I go Bungee Jumping While Pregnant?
Bungee jumping? Let’s tell you what this activity is like first.
In bungee jumping, you (the jumper) finds a good jumping site. At the jumping site, you get to the cliff or the point where you’ll be jumping off from. A bungee cord is firmly and securely attached to your feet (ankles precisely). The cord is designed to stretch and not break to hold you up just before you hit the ground or water (depending on the site). You’re to jump off the cliff and the bungee cord springs you back up just before you hit the ground.
Maybe you’re a very adventurous person and can’t stay nine months without taking an adventure. Or you desire to instill a fearless or adventurous spirit in your baby. Whatever your reason, try to keep away from bungee jumping to you’re delivered of your baby and healed.
If you must do something adventurous, you can do that using 7D virtual reality.
Amongst exercises to avoid during pregnancy, bungee jumping is one of them.
Rather, ‘exercise patience’ till after pregnancy and healing from delivery.
7. Are Pilates Exercises to Avoid During Pregnancy?
Here are pilates exercises that are not safe during pregnancy:
- The Chest List
After the first three months of your pregnancy (the first trimester), you should begin to avoid exercises that require you to crunch/compress your abdominal cavity. A modification for this is to think of stabilizing the abdominal muscles instead of crunching. You can do this by Toe taps.
- Pilates Plank
This exercise solely depends on your strength. You may continue this exercise until late in your pregnancy. If a time comes when you’re not able to keep your pelvis lifted and support your belly, then it’s time you modify. A modification for this is the modified plank or hover plank. This modified form will work the core while still supporting the lower back.
- The Pilates Roll up
After the first three months of your pregnancy, this exercise begins to put too much pressure on the abdominal wall. A modification for it is The modified roll-up. This modified form still works the core but puts less pressure on the rectus abdominus.
- Swimmer: This requires you to lie flat on your stomach. And as you know, exercises that require you to lie flat on your stomach isn’t a great idea after you have a bump. A modification for this is the kneeling swimmer. This modified form will engage the abs and work the thighs without putting too much pressure on the belly. This could also help you with posture and alignment.
- The Criss Cross
This is another exercise that puts too much pressure on the abdominals during pregnancy. A modification for this is The Banana Leg lift. This Banana leg lift works the obliques in a way that is safe and great for pregnancy.
You may love to ‘kick butts,’ and karate is the only exercise you enjoy doing. Sadly, your pregnancy requires that you stop karate till you deliver your baby.
Martial arts training is one of the exercises to avoid during pregnancy. Even more, if you’ve never had karate classes before, your pregnancy period is a bad time to start taking classes.
If you must get karate classes, maybe you can, before the end of the first trimester. After the end of the first trimester, karate becomes one of the exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
Imagine getting kicked in the stomach during a martial art class, that would be karate-gone-wrong for you.
Karate is one of the exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
9. Can I Do Handstands While Pregnant?
You may have a lot of love for gymnastics and yoga, but handstands during pregnancy? You may be super driven and motivated, and desire to see your full pregnancy potential, still avoid handstands.
Also when you see images of random pregnant ladies online doing a handstand, you may be tempted to try out. If you do not feel confident about it, do not attempt.
Handstands are exercises to avoid during pregnancy. Much more, if you’ve never attempted a handstand before, during your pregnancy would be a bad time to start.
Remember your weight is no longer the same, and the center of gravity changed a bit. During pregnancy, the handstand joins the family of exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
10. Horseback Riding
Horseback riding is really fun, but once you get pregnant and the bump appears, it joins the exercises to avoid during pregnancy. No matter how much you love horse riding, there’s a need to cease riding till after delivery.
This is due to the galloping and the way you get to be bouncing on the horse while riding. This isn’t very safe for you and your baby during pregnancy. There is also a need to avoid activities that can lead to falling or abdominal trauma.
You may still be able to enjoy horseback riding during the first three months of your pregnancy if you are an expert horse rider. This is only possible if the horse is walking and not galloping while you are on its back.
You get clumsier during pregnancy, and your sense of balance is not very good. To keep your balance on the horse could be really tricky for you.
Furthermore, the jolting motion of a running horse can lead to placental disruption. This is a serious pregnancy complication where the placenta gets separated from the uterus.
Horseback riding certainly is one of the exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
11. Tire Turning
You may love seemingly tough exercises like tire lifting for muscle and stamina building. However, during pregnancy, it becomes one of the exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
The constant bending to pick the tire while it lies against your chest and upper part of your stomach isn’t very safe for you during pregnancy.
Furthermore, the tire may seem really heavy during pregnancy and can be seen as a form of heavy weightlifting. This isn’t safe during pregnancy. This makes tire turning become one of the exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
12. Pole Dancing
Pole dancing during pregnancy, really? Maybe during the first trimester of your pregnancy, but after then, you should stop. This is amongst the activities or exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
More so, if you’ve never given pole dancing a try, do not try it out during pregnancy. That would be bad timing. You may decide to try it out to do something sexy for your husband, that would be a bad decision. You can wait till after pregnancy.
So many things could go out of place while doing a pole dance pregnant. Pole dance falls amongst the exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
13. Mountain Biking
This is a fun activity only if you’re not pregnant and have a high level of experience. Mountain biking is amongst the activities and exercises to avoid during pregnancy. It is not advisable to go mountain biking during pregnancy.
This is because of the galloping and excess vibrations you’ll experience during mountain biking. Furthermore, the jolting motion of a mountain bike can lead to placental disruption. This is a serious pregnancy complication where the placenta gets separated from the uterus.
More so, if you’re new to mountain biking or have never tried, pregnancy is a bad time to try out. During pregnancy is not the safest of times.
Also, considering the change in balance during pregnancy, you should not.
Certainly, mountain biking is amongst the exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
14. Rock Climbing
In Rock climbing your body needs to be close to the surface you are climbing. During pregnancy, your stomach automatically grows out and prevents you from having that ‘body close to surface’ you need for rock climbing.
Also, the chances of you falling during mountain climbing are high, coupled with the fact that there’s been a change in your body’s weight balance.
This makes mountain climbing be amongst the exercises to avoid during pregnancy. Also, if you are new to mountain climbing or have never tried before, your pregnancy period is a bad time to try.
Mountain climbing certainly is one of the exercises to avoid during pregnancy.
During pregnancy, it is advised that you keep away from exercises and activities that are rigorous and involve contact.
Soccer is one of the activities or exercises to avoid during pregnancy. There are chances that a push or fall may occur and you and your baby can get endangered. If you crave to get involved in soccer, you could have soft training sessions that wouldn’t require you to pace about or make too many jumps.
Try not to get involved in hot or rigorous training sessions, as this won’t be ideal for you and your baby.
Soccer is one of the exercises to avoid during pregnancy, especially after the first trimester.
There are some other activities and exercises to avoid during pregnancy, such as volleyball, basketball, ice hockey, and the likes of that.
To know the best exercises you should engage in during pregnancy, you can read The Very Best Workouts For Each Trimester Of Pregnancy.
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