Pilates and Pregnancy
Nothing puts your body through so many rapid changes and stresses as pregnancy. Exercise when pregnant has always been advised, albeit gently. Pilates is a form of holistic exercise that is beneficial regardless of age, gender or fitness level and is regarded as the safest form of exercise available today. Pilates during pregnancy has become a hot topic amongst celebrities and fitness guru’s across the globe.
The basic function of Pilates is to strengthen the whole body and restore balance and control, through an anatomical understanding of the key systems; skeletal and muscular. Many people start Pilates to improve their posture, mobility or flexibility, and the holistic approach this exercise form takes means that they soon achieve even greater benefits. The older enthusiast might use Pilates to reduce their aches and pains, especially if they are unfortunate enough to suffer with a form of arthritis or muscular problems. Younger people use it for muscle tone, to maintain balance and coordination, improve their circulation or simply to feel better and more energised in their daily lives.
When you are pregnant it’s important to look after yourself as you are carrying and nurturing another person. Alongside eating the correct food and making sure you keep hydrated, Pilates can help you with both mind and body to have the best pregnancy and birth. The growth of your baby results in additional stress being placed on the spine and surrounding organs and muscles, but it can also change your centre of gravity. Pilates exercises can strengthen your core, supporting the spine and building muscles that can reduce that heavy, unbalanced feeling you may experience.
Pelvic-floor muscles should be exercised to help you through labour, and Pilates exercises can be modified easily as your body changes to ensure you are always at peak fitness. Many of the exercises are based on your hands and knees which is ideal for pregnancy and may even help the baby to be in the correct position for birth. Alongside strengthening exercises, there are many breathing techniques and relaxation exercises to prepare you for the new phase of life you are about to enter into.
When you are a new mother, life can become more hectic as you learn to schedule in your daily tasks from before with those required of you now to raise your beautiful baby. Pilates is also beneficial when postnatal, in order to retain and improve posture and tone your back and tummy. Exercising in this way can also promote additional energy- invaluable to new mothers! Pilates can help your body get back to normal and maintain your well-being during and after pregnancy.
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