There are new pregnancy guidelines that show exercise cuts odds of major complications by as much as forty percent. A new guideline for exercise during pregnancy found that physical activity is not associated with any unwanted complications and can infact reduce the chance of developing a major pregnancy complication. Following three years of research, in 2019 there is a report with Guidelines for Physical Activity Throughout Pregnancy, this is a report released after fifteen years of earlier research by a leading university. As per experts it was high time that such a report surfaced for the betterment of pregnant women.

The compelling recommendation is that all pregnant women, with the exception of those suffering because of medical reasons, need to be physically very active as is advised by medical experts from leading universities. Even for women who are not physically active even before becoming pregnant, the same recommendations apply. The guideline includes six recommendations, also there is an advice for pregnant women to be engaged in at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise each week. Even brisk walk, gardening, or a gentle swim would be good for health when practised frequently.

Important Recommendations

  • All women with no contraindication need to be physically active throughout the pregnancy stage.
  • Pregnant women should practice at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity each week for a positive effect on health.
  • Physical activity should be practiced for at least three days every week.
  • To achieve more positive health benefits the pregnant women should also practice a variety of aerobic exercises and resistance training activities.
  • To reduce the risk of urinary incontinence women may opt for pelvic floor muscle training (such as Kegel exercises) on a daily basis.
  • There is a need for pregnant women to change position who experience light-headedness, experience nausea, or feel unwell while exercising, it is better to avoid being flat on the back while exercising to avoid the supine position.

Women can also go in for prenatal exercise to reduce the risks of major complications. According to the research, prenatal exercise is not associated with fatal complications such as miscarriage, stillbirth or preterm birth.

Biggest fears that pregnant women have include having a higher risk for miscarriage, likelihood of a preterm delivery, and having the possibility of delivering birth to a smaller baby. Women who are consistent with the exercise routine can expect a 40 per cent reduction in the chance of developing a major pregnancy complication such as pre-eclampsia, gestational hypertension or gestational diabetes, such is the advantage of exercising. According to experts if such complications do not develop there is a possibility of a positive impact on the life-long health of both the mother and the baby. Still women do not need to feel guilty of not being active as there may be pressing reasons forcing women to lead sedentary lifestyle.

While planning to exercise there are certain things to be kept in mind like avoiding exercises that involve physical contact or danger of falling. Also, one should avoid exercising at a high altitude and in excessive heat. These guidelines have been confirmed by experts of the field and will go a long way in ensuring good health of the pregnant woman and the baby.

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