Current Exercise Guidelines For Low Risk Pregnancies

Brooke Ditlow - Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Current Exercise Guidelines For Low Risk Pregnancies

by Jaime Wooten, AFFA, CPT Prenatal/Postnatal Health and Fitness Educator

Exercise can be a wonderful outlet to prepare your mind, body and spirit in preparation for motherhood. New guidelines from ACOG & AFFA suggest that women with low risk pregnancies should workout 30-90 minutes a day! Walking, yoga, light weight-lifting and belly dancing are all fantastic programs to begin during your pregnancy.

Current Considerations and Modifications:

1) Perceived Rate of Exertion: On a Scale of 1-10, you should be about a 7/8 somewhat hard. If you need to test yourself make sure you can speak comfortably

2) Stay well hydrated! Take extra water breaks!

3) Second and Third Trimesters exercising on your back should be limited to 3 minutes. Abdominal work should be done on a slant ie: on a ball.

4) Avoid activities with high risk of falling or contact sports.

5) Hormonal carpal tunnel and tendonitis is quite prevelent. Lifting 3-5lbs weights is recommended. If you have a tingling in the hands or wrists, avoid direct pressure with palms while doing exercises on all fours and use fists and elbows as modification.

7) Especially in the 3rd trimester, if you have heartburn keep your head above your heart.

6) Signs to stop exercising and call your doctor include: vaginal bleeding, difficulting breathing, dizziness, and headache.

Listen to your body at all times, and remember to always consult your doctor or midwife before beginning an exercise program. Exercise can help you physically and mentally prepare you for labor and beyond. Enjoy your journey!

Jaime Wooten, AFFA CPT blends her background as a mother to 4&6 year old girls and 17 years as a certified fitness professional to assist her clients through this unique time of their lives. You can reach her at