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Whether you are on your first pregnancy or your fifth, staying active is important. Regular physical exertion during pregnancy boosts your energy level, helps you sleep better, reduces stress, reduces your physical discomfort, and lifts your spirits. Keeping your body in good shape during pregnancy also helps prepare it for giving birth and allows it to bounce back more quickly after delivery.

Pilates is one of the best ways to stay active during pregnancy. Here is a look at some of the dos and don’ts which enable you to experience the regular benefits of pilates, just slightly modified to accommodate your “condition.”

Pilates Dos During Pregnancy

Practice pilates daily. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends that women get 20 to 30 minutes of moderate activity every day during their pregnancies.

Take the proper class. The proper class makes all the difference. This does not necessarily mean that you need to take a pregnancy-specific class. Here at PBX®, we have a class that suits the needs of pregnant women at every stage of their pregnancy. Join us in these classes:

1st Trimester: Barre, One or Basic

2nd Trimester: Basic and Private Sessions

3rd Trimester: Basic and Private Sessions

Post Natal: Basic and Private Sessions until your instructor approves you to go back to One or Barre.

Be careful about falling. You are more likely to fall when you are pregnant. Be aware of how your center of balance shifts as the fetus grows, and keep this change in mind during exercise. Learn how to fall safely to protect the child, coming down on your knees or a shoulder.

Take things slow. Never overexert yourself while you are pregnant. If a certain position feels uncomfortable, stop doing it immediately.

You can keep up your daily practice at home, but you should consult with your pilates instructor about which positions to avoid and how to modify positions to make them safe.

Pilates Don’ts During Pregnancy

After the first trimester, avoid all positions that require you to lie on your back or your stomach. Lying on your stomach can make you feel nauseated. Lying on the back after the fetus has gained some weight is dangerous, as it places the fetus on top of blood vessels beneath the uterus. The weight can squeeze those veins and arteries shut, cutting of the circulation of blood.

Don’t stretch your joints as far as they can go. During pregnancy, a hormone called relaxin is produced that softens the tissues and ligaments so that your body can expand to accommodate the baby. This makes it easy to hyperextend your joints if you are not careful.

Do not hold your breath during exercise. Always remember to breathe while you are holding positions. Your body needs a good supply of oxygen, and if it doesn’t get it, you could pass out.

Never keep going if you start to feel dizzy or nauseated. You also should stop immediately if you feel any kind of pain.

Don’t overexert yourself. Moderation is the key to making pilates healthy and helpful during pregnancy. You should be able to carry on a conversation without gasping when you exercise. If you can’t, you’re working too hard. Slow down.

Pilates is one of the best ways to get the activity you need during pregnancy. Keep in mind that this information is not medical advice. Always consult with your obstetrician before starting any exercise routine while you are pregnant.

PBX® pilates barre extreme offers pilates classes in Raleigh, NC, tailored to the needs of the individual, as well as health counseling and cleansing. To learn more, contact us online or call 919-435-4229.