5 Reasons to Strengthen Your Core during Pregnancy

During pregnancy, your exercise goals will naturally change.  You’re now less concerned about your slim and trim bikini bod, and more interested in strengthening your body for the demands of pregnancy.  Many women use pregnancy as an excuse not to exercise.  As tired as you may be, prenatal exercise is important for your health and that of your baby.  The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommend at least 30 minutes of exercise 5 to 6 times a week.  And you don’t have to wimp out either.  Moderate to intense exercise is perfectly fine during pregnancy as long as you build up gradually, don’t exceed a heart rate of 160 bmp and practice prenatal fitness safety.

Today we’re starting our two-part core series with 5 reasons to strengthen your core during pregnancy.  Later this week we’ll share five fabulous exercises that will help you do it.

  • 5 Reasons to Strengthen Your Core during Pregnancy

    Get Your Own Back: Your core is not just your abdominal area.  The core refers to the entire mid-section that extends from your abs to your back.  As your bump grows during pregnancy, you’ll have to call on your back for support and balance.  Hormones during pregnancy often loosen the joints and ligaments around the spine and can cause an exaggerated spinal curve in the low back.  A strong spine and back muscles will also ensure you have good posture, even as your belly extends.  The extra back strength will come in handy later when you’re carrying around your baby once she arrives.

  • Take Some of the Labor out of Labor: Core exercises help you labor easier in a variety of ways.  First, you’ll be more flexible and have better joint mobility, allowing you to use a variety of birthing positions with ease.  The pelvic floor muscles benefit greatly as your baby drops lower later in pregnancy and is eventually pushed through the birth canal.  Having control over your pelvic floor will make pushing easier during delivery.
  • Hold It Together: Pregnancy can contribute to abdominal separation due to the onslaught of new hormones.  This is when the two parts of the rectus abdominus muscles detach from one another due to weakening or softening of the vertical seam.  Abdominal separation causes the pelvic wall to tilt and no longer helps support the spine, leading to back pain.  And as we already discussed, a strong back is vital during pregnancy.
  • Recover Faster after Childbirth: You’ve probably heard that when you’re in better shape prior to pregnancy, it’s easier to regain fitness afterwards.  The same theory applies during pregnancy.  If you keep your muscles strong, you’ll have an easier time recovering after childbirth and returning to your pre-pregnancy body.  Many women neglect the core out of fear that they will hurt their baby and because it’s hard to see results since you won’t necessarily notice toning like you once did.  But with safe exercises – like those we will share later this week – you can feel better and get back in shape quickly and healthily after your baby is born.
  • Sports BraYou Get to Wear Cute Active-wear Maternity Bras: Pregnant women deserve to look great in whatever they wear and that includes your active-wear maternity bras.  The best maternity bras are those that you can wear well after pregnancy, which means they will be functional for breastfeeding as well.  Our Loving Moments collection features several adorably comfortable active-wear bras for your core-strengthening workouts, like our sports bra with adjustable side bands, our cotton blend supportive active wirefree nursing or our stretchable breathable seamless bralette.

We hope these five reasons are enough to convince you to strengthen your core during pregnancy.  Stay tuned later this week for five core-boosting exercises to keep you strong for pregnancy and beyond.