Many expectant mothers often worry whether playing sports while pregnant is safe or not? The fact is, participating in slow sporting activities is beneficial for both the mother and child. Nonetheless, the same does not apply for high-impact or contact sports, and these must not be practiced…
Whether it is safe to be playing sports while pregnant, may vary from one case to another depending on the health of the mother or the unborn child. Pregnant women wishing to indulge in sporting activities must firstly consult their gynecologist and discuss the issue. Every pregnancy is different and the conditions under which the pregnancy is taking place may alter the course of general day-to-day habits. For instance a woman who has been playing sports (low-impact, non-contact sport) for a major part of her life may continue to do so, if she has a safe and healthy pregnancy. However, women who are expecting twins or have health conditions such as anemia or pre-eclampsia should desist from strenuous sporting activities, and instead opt for simple exercises.
Things to Remember While Playing Sports During Pregnancy
#1 – Consider the Stage of Your Pregnancy
It is okay to do sports from the early stages of pregnancy, because the embryo will be protected by the pelvic bone. However, as and when the baby grows bigger the pelvic bone parts further which may risk the baby’s health. Also in the later stages of pregnancy, due to increasing weight and decreased stamina, playing a sport that you previously enjoyed may not possible and safe anymore. If you really enjoy sports, it would be safer to continue it after proper precaution as far into your pregnancy as you can.
#2 – Chose Safe Sports
Do not continue with grueling exercises such as volleyball, squash, basketball or adventure sports and contact sports. These can severely hamper your health as well as the baby’s. Contact sports can accidentally cause trauma to the baby and harm both the mother and the child. Secondly, your muscles and joints will weaken during pregnancy, which will make you more vulnerable to injuries. It would be best to go in for easy and soothing sports, the ones which will help you stay fit, even when you are taking part in a competition.
#3 – Remember to Warm Up
You must never disregard the significance of warming up before exercising. Being a sports enthusiast you must already be aware of this fact. Warming up helps the body muscles and the mind get prepared for the physical activity it is about to participate in. You’ll need to wake your body up, which is why you must do some basic and safe stretching exercises while pregnant. This will ensure that you do not suffer from cramps, muscle pulls and sprains after exercising.
#4 – Eat and Drink Healthy
Doing sports takes a lot of calories away from the body, which is a good thing normally, but can be tricky during an ongoing pregnancy. This does not mean that you overeat. No, all it states is that you keep yourself well-nourished, and eat as much as you wish. All you’ll need is to practice commonsense and prudence while deciding how much food your body requires. It is also important that you drink a lot of water, before, during, and after playing sports. This will ensure that neither you nor your baby is dehydrated.
#5 – Do Sports Regularly
If you wish to indulge in sports during your pregnancy, it would be best to continue with it throughout your pregnancy. A simple 30 minute workout everyday will help you and your baby stay fit and will help make the delivery smoother. The reason being that you’d have built up a good stamina and your muscles would have become stronger, thereby being able to absorb the strain of the delivery.
#6 – Do Not Overexert
Exercise as much as you can and stop when you think you’ve had enough. It is not good to overexert yourself while being pregnant, as it may severely reduce the supply of oxygen and blood to the baby and the mother’s heart. Exercise regularly, and be comfortable with your body while you’re working out.
Safe Sports During Pregnancy
- Slow Swimming
- Yoga or Tai-chi
- Treadmill Walking
- Slow Jogging
- Doubles Badminton and Tennis
- Slow Dancing
While you exercise, try to keep your body temperature under control. Do not get overheated. Wear loose fitted and airy cotton clothes which will help the sweat dry up quicker. Drink water at regular intervals and remember to take short breaks every time you begin to feel heavy-headed and tired. There is nothing wrong with playing sports during pregnancy. However, it is up to you to ensure that you participate in safe sports and try to avoid contact sports thereby risking harming yourself and the baby in the process.