Pregnant during summer? Hop into the pool to relax, stretch, and strengthen. You can move with intention to prepare for birth while also enjoying genuine self-care. These three exercises are low-impact and serve a dual-purpose:
- help your mind and body relax;
- strengthen and open in preparation for delivery and recovery.
The weightlessness our bodies enjoy in water makes it the perfect place for exercise during pregnancy. The extra weight on our pelvic floor, hips, and back get a gentle massage and much needed break immersed in water. Vitamin D also supports immune functions. Swim safely and have fun knowing that your body is getting therapy both physically and mentally.
As always, consult your healthcare provider and exercise with great awareness to your body.
- Gentle Double-Backstroke: After entering the pool slowly, turn over to float on your back. Gently kick while doing a double backstroke- both arms extended straight from head, and push the water away. Breathe deeply and steadily. Do this for 5-10 minutes. This exercise will strengthen hips, core, and open shoulders.
- Shallow End Walk-Trot: This easy movement is good for a breathing exercise to ignite self-care and light exercise. For 10-20 minutes walk back and forth taking big chest and belly Blossom Breaths (learn about this breathing in our “Your Best Birth” course on our site) with one hand on heart and one cradling your baby bump as you inhale deeply expanding like a balloon, and exhale forcefully. Take it up a notch by adding a steady push-off to make your walk a “trot.” Every step, inhale, and next step, exhale.
- Easy Jumping Jacks: Wait, what? Yes, jumping jacks in the shallow end, extending straight up and down, for 5-7 reps two-three times through will provide strength to your thighs, hips, back, shoulders, and pelvic floor. All areas needed to support a strong labor, delivery, and recovery! If this move is out of reach, try slow and steady squats while lifting one leg to the side each time you rise and alternate to the other side on the next rep. Each time you rise, ignite your pelvic floor in an upward motion.
Questions about any exercises? You can learn more about how to prepare for your mind+body developments during your pregnancy and beyond in our online pregnancy course: Your Best Birth
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