Sports in pregnancy: how to choose the right one

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Marie-Ange Demory
@marie-angedemory
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There are women who as soon as they discover they are expecting a baby already look forward to 9 months of "dolce far niente" between bed and sofa. It is certainly true that pregnancy brings fatigue with it and that the body sends clear signals that require you to stop. But it is one thing to rest when necessary and another thing is to let yourself be taken by laziness. The benefits of physical activity with the belly are recognized and, if there are no particular physical conditions for which you have to give up, a little sport is absolutely recommended. The coach (and mom) guides us in this world Carlotta Viola.



Carlotta Viola

    What are the benefits of sports during pregnancy?

    “In the gestational period the woman undergoes numerous and different physical and emotional changes. The body changes shape, the weight increases, the mood is fickle, and the movement, as well as the daily routine, can sometimes become difficult, heavy or even impossible compared to when not expecting a baby.
    Moving is the key to everything. The nature of things is movement, and the embryo - then the fetus - moves immediately and always with us. It is only necessary to identify the most suitable gymnastics to allow the future mother to end her pregnancy in good shape and with very few resentments.
    Movement during pregnancy helps to control weight gain without forcing the mother to sacrifice too many foods, reduces the risk of gestational diabetes, helps relieve possible pain or a sense of heaviness due to the inevitable growth of the baby and the belly, and it is a panacea for the mood ".

    How to choose the right business?


    "Today there are many disciplines that support the gestational phase, from swimming to yoga, to the very simple gentle gymnastics, and to the most recent specific applications of pilates, GYROTONIC® and GYROKINESIS®. Usually, if there are particular situations, it is It is always better to rely on your trusted doctor, who knowing the patient will also be able to advise on the frequency and perhaps give her own specific opinion on which discipline to follow. But in principle, the mother must choose based on her taste, personal inclination and, above all, to your own comfort and serenity. It is very important that the activity chosen during pregnancy does not involve too much fatigue, that it focuses on stretching, work on the perineum, lengthening and strengthening of the spine, preparation at the time of The study and work on breathing are no less important than physical work, so you have to choose an activity that is yesof leisure and relaxation, but also preparatory to the great future event ".


    Are there any contraindications to physical activity during pregnancy?

    “Unless the gynecologist gives different indications, there are no contraindications if you choose a similar activity at the moment you are experiencing. In compliance with the new physical structure, the change in respiratory resistance and possible fatigue, you can safely follow a specific physical activity for pregnancy. Probably the times will get longer and the motor activity will be decidedly slowed down, but this does not mean that it is not profound. On the contrary. In pregnancy you have to respect slow times and work a lot with breathing to exercise the diaphragm as much as possible, helping to accelerate metabolism, stimulate lymphatic drainage and create more and more awareness of what is happening in our body, in view of the great and difficult moment of childbirth ".


    What are the most suitable sports?

    “Swimming is the most 'senior' and perhaps still the most chosen. In water, the absence of gravity allows the body to work in a profound way without risk for the child, it helps to drain excess fluids and can be practiced immediately and until the end. However, he does not have a particular focus on breathing, a very useful tool especially in recent months to counteract anxiety and agitation, but also to deal with labor.
    Pre-birth gymnastics generally consists of gentle and relaxing movements and is especially indicated when no sport was practiced before pregnancy.
    Pilates and yoga are very suitable both for the particular attention to stretching and strengthening the spine, and for a deeper approach to breathing.
    GYROTONIC® and GYROKINESIS® are slightly more recent disciplines, although by now quite well known, but still not very widespread among expectant mothers. They stand out from the rest of the activities for their very dynamic and at the same time aware and profound approach to movement. The movements are elliptical and fluid, with specific tools for the GYROTONIC®, free body for the GYROKINESIS®. They allow to elasticise and strengthen the spine without excessively stressing the abdominals, free the legs by stimulating lymphatic drainage, but above all they unblock the work of the diaphragm which is inevitably conditioned by the increase in the size of the uterus. At the center of everything and in great synergy with the movements, there is breathing, which serves to give an almost musical rhythm to the training, obviously helping to oxygenate the body. There is no contraindication and the movements that characterize these workouts are also useful during labor ".



    Sport must necessarily be coupled with a healthy lifestyle. What are the rules to follow? 

    “Certainly during pregnancy it is important to think about a healthy lifestyle for the mother so that it is consequently so for the baby. Nutrition is at the center of everything, as is movement, constant and intelligent, but also some small general precautions such as avoiding smoking and not neglecting the hours of sleep ".

    What are the most common concerns of a new mother about her physical appearance after giving birth?

    “Most of us obviously hope to get back into the old pair of jeans as soon as possible, without making too many sacrifices, since the first few days, months of maternity, involve a lot of effort. But postpartum is a much larger world. the body sometimes looks the same, apparently, but in fact everything has changed. The abdominals need time and work to regain tone and to return to their place, and the perineum needs good recovery and reactivation gymnastics. The body feels a void and psychologically it is felt. However, it is right to understand and accept the recovery times that are different for each of us ".

    What sport to do after childbirth to get back in shape?

    “You have to choose the one you like best and that motivates you the most, in my opinion so as to encourage your will and commitment. As long as you try to combine any chosen activity with specific gymnastics for the pelvic floor and recovery of the perineum. It is essential not to neglect this aspect and, even for post-partum, GYROTONIC® and GYROKINESIS® are very suitable. By totally changing the training focus compared to the pre-natal period, they are able to restore the work of the perineum in a very short time and restore tone to the muscles of the whole body but above all to the abdominals ".


    Are sports and breastfeeding compatible?

    "Absolutely yes! If you choose activities such as those indicated above or in any case you try not to stress the muscles too much and encourage excessive lactic acid production, there are absolutely no risks. On the contrary! Movement stimulates the production of serotonin, helping mom to relax. The production of milk thus increases, and the mother can enjoy the breastfeeding experience also thanks to that little moment of physical and energetic distraction that she has granted herself ".

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