In a pool, you don’t have to worry about tripping, making laps a perfect cardio aternative to jogging, according to Lisa Druxman, a trainer in San Diego and founder of Fit-4-Mom. You’ll work all the muscles necessary for balance: Abs, obliques, lumbar muscles, glutes and hip fexors stretch and strengthen simultaneously in this all-in-one workout. Plus, if your pelvis has been slanting forward on dry land, the lower-gravity conditions in the pool help you realign—which feels great and may train your pelvis to tilt less.
“Yoga is all about equilibrium,” says Anne Rust, prenatal yoga instructor and co-founder of MamaSeeds, a fitness and health website for new and expecting moms. In yoga, strength-building poses are practiced on both sides, encouraging symmetry. And balancing poses will keep your rapidly changing body up to speed. Plus, yoga involves stretching, which encourages muscles to hug the joints in place, providing additional stability. “Don’t worry if you topple over,” Rust adds. “A growth spurt may throw you off one week, but you’re likely to regain that balance the following week.” Can’t find a prenatal class but want to try yoga anyway? Look for class names that include “gentle,” beginner” or “restorative” and avoid class names with “hot,” “Bikram” or “Vinyasa flow;” also, skip poses that involve lying on your back or stomach and sit out any twisting moves.
“Pedaling gives the hip joints a safe range of motion,” says Francina Segbefia, indoor cycling instructor at Revolve Fitness, a cycling studio in Arlington, Va., who gave birth this January. Without a regular workout, your hip flexors tend to constrict, especially if you sit all day, and when they get tight your pelvis hitches forward—not something you need to exaggerate right now. Hopping on a stationary bike puts the hip flexors to work. Plus, you’ll tone secondary muscle groups like quads and hamstrings, which also improve overall balance, Segbefia adds. Just skip out-of-the saddle moves to protect your knees
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