Home Women's Health Exercises to keep you fit during the third trimester

Exercises to keep you fit during the third trimester

It is true that during pregnancy, you might not feel your best and even getting out of bed may seem difficult on certain days. But, it is also true that exercising for at least 5 days a week is beneficial for any pregnant woman. Exercising during pregnancy can make you feel and look better. Specifically, during the third trimester, it will help your body cope with constant changes and will help your body to prepare itself for childbirth by making your muscles stronger and making your heart fitter. At the same time, it can help you devise your own strategies to manage labor pains and increase your endurance levels. In fact, they also help during the post-pregnancy period and help you get back into shape quickly.

Although, it is best to start a specific pregnancy workout from the first trimester itself, starting from the third trimester can also help you a lot. It will relieve your backaches, help improve the posture and tone the muscles along with reduce constipation and helping you to sleep better. All of these exercises are safe to perform, but get medical advice before starting the routine to know if you have any complications or if you need to follow specific advice to perform these exercises.

Kegel exercises

Kegel exercises are basically a group of exercises that targets your pelvic muscles and are performed while sitting on the floor. These exercises usually aid with childbirth with women as they strengthen the pubococcygeus muscles of the pelvic floor. To perform kegel exercises, you must maintain your focus on tightening your pelvic muscles and these exercises must be repeated at least 3 times a day for 10 repetitions. To perform kegel exercises, imagine that you are trying to stop the flow of urine or stopping yourself from passing gas. This way you are contracting the muscles of your pelvic floor. Remember, not to move your legs, buttocks or abdominal region while performing these exercises. Tailor sit is one of the simplest exercises. To do this exercise, just sit on the floor, keep your knees bent and your ankles crossed. Now, lean forward and keep your back straight. Relax yourself. Repeat as many times as possible. Although, these exercises may seem weird, they truly help in easing the process of labor. American Pregnancy Association suggest that women who perform kegel exercises have easier childbirth than those who don’t.

Pelvic tilts

This exercise must be performed during the morning hours to keep yourself fit for the entire day. This helps in strengthening your pelvic muscles for delivery and also provide you the strength to carry out your day in an active manner. To do this Pilates exercise, firstly get down on your hands and knees, making sure that the wrists are directly below your shoulder and your knees under the hips. Just in case if you have problems keeping your wrist down, take a towel and place it under the wrists. Inhale while arching your back. Tilt your tailbone under and round your back. Now, while drawing your abs in, contract the pelvic floor muscle doing a kegel squeeze discussed previously. Repeat for 8 to 10 repetition. Initially, you might find this a little tiring. So, sit back on your heels between the repetitions to take some rest. Make sure that you don’t wear tight clothing while doing this exercise. Breathe deeply while performing this exercise. This exercise will enable flexibility and joint mobility while relieving discomforts to prepare you for labor.

Clamming

Clamming is a Pilates exercise, which is specially beneficial when performed during the third trimester of pregnancy. It calms your mind, soothes your body and provides you energy. At the same time, it strengthens your spine, alleviates back pain and provides you endurance to deal with labor pains. To perform this exercise, lie on the right side and keep your legs slightly forward with your knees bent and stacked over each other. Keep a pillow under your head and preferably, put a flat pillow under your belly for support. Stack the hips and keep the spine straight while drawing your abs in it. Place the left hand on the belly and connect to the baby. Meanwhile, your toes must touch each other. Now, rotate your left hip and tilt your left knee in a way that both the knees are as far away as possible. Slowly lower and come back to the starting positions. Repeat for 8 to 12 times and then turn to the next side. This easy to do exercise will help you connect with the baby while devising your own birthing strategies. Just make sure that you inhale and exhale deeply for maximum benefits.

Swimming

Swimming is probably the most safest exercise for a woman during third trimester. It not just tones your body, but at the same time it doesn’t add any extra weight on your joints. At the same time it acts as a stress reliever. Swimming for at least half an hour, three times a week can increase joint mobility and prepare your body for childbirth. Swimming is a natural activity for the baby in your womb as the child himself is swimming inside the womb. Swimming will raise your heart rate, increase the blood flow throughout the body, provide you with energy and reduce back and neck pain. Just make sure that you don’t take too many laps and don’t repeat after a specific time. Swimming as such won’t cause any overheating in your body which is bad for the child. In fact, if you prefer swimming, you can undergo water birth as it is more comfortable for women who love water. But avoid scuba diving or water skiing, as these thrilling sports will carry more harm than good.

Bicycling

Bicycling is a great activity during pregnancy. It is not over straining, but at the same time, it provides a total body workout during pregnancy. It strengthens your pelvic muscles, prepare you for the delivery and increase the flexibility of your lower body. Moreover, unlike other exercises, bicycling supports your weight so that your body doesn’t have to stress itself to stay fit. Opt for a stationary bike if you don’t feel comfortable riding a normal bike. A stationary bike will work great and reduce your chances of falling due to shifting in center of gravity. Remember, your abdomen will grow nearly each day during the third trimester, so make sure that you don’t put a lot of stress on your back. Also, start slowly if you haven’t performed any exercises during the first and second trimester. Avoid over-exerting. Bicycle for about 20-30 minutes each day at a slow speed and take few breaks if you feel tired. Don’t perform this exercise if you feel heavily nauseated or way too tired.

Aerobics

For a woman who used to gym before getting pregnant, aerobics is an excellent option to keep herself fit. During the third trimester, women can opt for aerobics as it will not only keep you strong and healthy, but it also ease way the pains, help to build endurance and also reduce body pains while promoting joint mobility. But if you haven’t exercised before pregnancy, talk to your medical professional and discuss the idea before beginning of a new program to access difficulties. Also, keeping balance during aerobics can be difficult for most of the pregnant women, so don’t opt for regular aerobics routine. Rather choose the one that is specifically designed for pregnant women. Most of the health clubs and gyms provide with aerobics class especially for pregnant women. Start slowly and take rest in the middle of your aerobics routine. Use an exercise ball for your exercises. Make sure that you don’t exercise lying flat on the ground for long durations as it may hurt your back. The exercises may seem a little difficult, but within a few days you will feel their effects and it will keep you bright and happy for the day.

Dancing

Dancing can be a fun, healthy activity to keep yourself fit and prepare your body for childbirth during the third trimester. Dancing will not just alleviate your pains and keep your hearty, but it will also enable flexibility, avoid you from becoming a couch potato and offer you loads of fun. This can be done at home or at a gym where special dancing classes are offered for pregnant women. You can even ask your partner to be a part of your dancing lessons. Special dancing classes with your partner will not just keep you strong, but it will also help you and your partner develop a strong bond while helping both of you connect with the baby. At the same time, dancing will ensure that you don’t feel lethargic all the day and help you deal with nausea and fatigue. But make sure that you don’t do strong dances like salsa or belly dancing and avoid any kind of lifting, spinning, leaping or jumping. Do simple, regular dancing or something elegant like waltz. Although, most women would feel weird during the first few days of the classes, soon you will enjoy it and meet new pregnant women with whom you can share your apprehensions and excitement.

Walking

There are certain pregnant women who can’t perform regular exercises because they may have complications. For such women or in fact, for any pregnant woman, walking can be a beneficial exercise as it is safe on the body and doesn’t over exert you to perform. It is easier on the knees in comparison to aerobics and running, plus it can be easily worked into your schedule. So, walk for at least half an hour to forty minutes each day for maximum benefits. Wear good shoes to avoid the risk of tripping or falling and avoid any pressure on your feet. Keep realistic goals for yourself and stretch well before you start walking. A little bit of warm up and cool down can work well with walking as it will allow you to stretch your body and keep you warm, increase flexibility and prepare you for childbirth.

Yoga

For ages, women have been doing yoga to keep themselves fit and relieve all stresses and pains during pregnancy. Yoga is not just beneficial for the body, but it is also beneficial for your baby with whom you can connect during yoga. Yoga doesn’t put any pressures on your body and at the same time, it is safe for you and the body. But don’t get excessively rigorous while performing yoga as doing too many postures can put strain on your body. Instead, opt for easy to do postures and breathing exercises that will calm your body, provide you a sense of well being, increase your endurance and help you during childbirth. Check out for yoga instructors who offer special yoga classes for pregnant women. Don’t forget to use your yoga mats and don’t lie flat on a ground for extended periods of time to avoid over straining your back.

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