I’ve said before and won’t hesitate to say again – the combined experience of pregnancy and childbirth is a monumentally physical task. To think or suggest otherwise is downright moronic. Therefore it is logical and an expression of common sense to encourage every woman to exercise during pregnancy, even those on bedrest, except in circumstances where it is deemed not medically safe to be physically active. That being said, exercise often should and always can be modified during pregnancy to best suit the physical changes being encountered. Contact sports – football, downhill skiing, boxing – are considered off limits, but it is worth considering also limiting exposure to high impact exercise – running is a chief example.
When it’s summer, the urge to run, (for some!) is at a high. But if mom is too rough with body during pregnancy, joints, muscles and connective tissues can be compromised, resulting in higher likelihood of joint pain, pelvic organ prolapse or urinary incontinence. After over a decade working with the perinatal population, I have yet to talk to a woman who wishes that she had not stopped running or some other impact activity during pregnancy. But the list of those who have told me they wish they had chosen different activities during pregnancy…well, that is a long list.
Want more? Check out my piece “Rethinking Running while Pregnant: Is it a good idea for mom?” over at Isis Parenting’s Blog.