Exercising During Pregnancy: Dos and Don'ts for a Healthy Pregnancy

Exercising During Pregnancy: Dos and Don'ts for a Healthy Pregnancy


Exercising during pregnancy is an essential part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle for both the mother and the baby. It helps to reduce the risk of gestational diabetes, excessive weight gain, and postpartum depression. However, it is important to understand the dos and don'ts of exercising during pregnancy to ensure the safety and well-being of the mother and the baby.

Dos and Don'ts of Exercising During Pregnancy:


a. Consult with your healthcare provider: Before starting any exercise routine, it is important to consult with your healthcare provider to determine which exercises are safe for you and your baby. This is especially important if you have any underlying medical conditions or complications during pregnancy.

According to Dr. Taraneh Shirazian, a gynecologist and assistant professor at NYU Langone Health, “It's important to have a conversation with your doctor about what exercises are safe for you to do, based on your pregnancy and your overall health."

b. Engage in low-impact exercises: Low-impact exercises such as walking, swimming, and prenatal yoga are great options for pregnant women as they are gentle on the joints and help to improve cardiovascular health. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), “Most pregnant women can do at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise on most, if not all, days of the week."

c. Stay hydrated: It is important to stay hydrated during exercise to prevent dehydration and overheating. Drinking water before, during, and after exercise can help to maintain a healthy fluid balance.

d. Wear comfortable clothing and proper footwear: Wearing comfortable, loose-fitting clothing and supportive footwear can help to prevent injury and provide comfort during exercise.


a. Avoid high-impact exercises: High-impact exercises such as running and jumping should be avoided during pregnancy as they can increase the risk of injury and strain on the joints. According to the ACOG, “Activities with a high risk of falling or abdominal trauma should also be avoided."

b. Don't exercise to exhaustion: It is important to listen to your body and avoid pushing yourself to exhaustion during exercise. Overexertion can lead to dehydration, overheating, and injury.

c. Don't exercise in extreme weather conditions: Exercising in extreme heat or cold can be dangerous during pregnancy as it can lead to dehydration, overheating, or hypothermia. It is important to exercise in a comfortable environment with proper ventilation and temperature control.

d. Don't hold your breath during exercise: Holding your breath during exercise can increase blood pressure and reduce oxygen supply to the baby. It is important to breathe normally and avoid strenuous activities that require holding your breath.

Benefits of Exercising During Pregnancy:

Reduces the risk of gestational diabetes: According to a study published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, “Women who engage in regular exercise before and during pregnancy have a significantly lower risk of developing gestational diabetes."

Improves cardiovascular health: Exercise helps to improve cardiovascular health by increasing blood circulation and reducing the risk of high blood pressure and heart disease.

Reduces the risk of excessive weight gain: Excessive weight gain during pregnancy can lead to complications such as gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, and preterm labor. Exercise helps to maintain a healthy weight and prevent excessive weight gain.

Reduces the risk of postpartum depression: According to a study published in the Journal of Psychiatric Research, “Exercise during pregnancy is associated with a reduced risk of postpartum depression."

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