Contrary to belief, a high percentage of people exercising in groups, rather than sweating it out solo.

 

The benefits of exercising during pregnancy are numerous.  It helps you combat excessive weight gain, keeps you fit, keeps back/pelvic pain at bay, helps you sleep you better, prepares your body for labour/motherhood, decreases the symptoms of morning sickness/nausea, and at the end of the day, it sets a great example for your unborn baby too.

 

Working out with other mums-to-be has its own separate benefits:

 

Motivation

When joining an exercise class, you’re more motivated than if you work out by yourself.  You have to be at a certain place at a certain time and therefore, your motivation for working out regularly is higher.  Attending a class that’s specific for pregnancy means that all of the exercises you’re performing are safe and effective and it’s inspirational to see other women in the late stages of their pregnancy still training right up to 40 weeks and beyond.

 

Exercise is goal-specific

Prenatal-104The top reasons most mums-to-be join a group exercise class are to: a) get fit for labour, b) combat excessive weight gain, and c) meet other pregnant women.  Although you’re pregnant for 40 weeks, those 9 months pass by fairly quickly, so it’s vital that you start exercising as soon as you feel up to it.  Pregnant women are all focussed on the same end goal too: to enable their bodies to stay in tip top shape for labour and motherhood.

 

Exercise intensity

Working out with other mums-to-be means you stay focussed.  Unless you have an instructor following you around the gym, swimming pool or at home, you’re less likely to exercise at an intensity high enough to make a difference.  It’s understandable that you don’t want to harm yourself or your unborn baby when you’re exercising.  Working out under the watchful eye of a Pre/Postnatal Specialist ensures that every exercise you perform is safe, you do just the right amount of reps and you walk away from a good workout, having targeted all of the major muscles that alter during pregnancy, rather than just making things up as you go along because it feels right to do so.

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Socialisation / make new friends

At a pregnancy fitness or Pilates class, you’re encouraged to chat to each other and you all have something in common.  You naturally make comparisons about how you’re feeling, you can share the exciting results of your 20-week scan, and fill each other in on what baby goods you’ve purchased.  Just like at your Antenatal Education classes, prenatal clients who exercise in a group also make long-lasting friendships.

 

Prenatal-137Compare notes

When you meet other mums-to-be, you realise that you’re not alone in your pregnancy.  When you’re exposed to a group of pregnant women, all at different stages of gestation, it’s a really great experience.  As your pregnancy develops, you’ll pass on the same information that your peers did to you when you first started exercising.  And, you’ll do the same to those under you, as your due date approaches.  Exercising in a group and chatting to those around you, just makes things seem that little bit less scary.

And there you have it.  My top reasons every pregnant woman should consider group exercise.  If you’re not already attending my Bump to Babe Pregnancy Fitness or Pilates classes, click here to book your space.