By Jenna Ledgerwood, Certified Personal Trainer and Physical Therapist
Training Through Your Trimesters
What does personal training during pregnancy look like?
If you are pregnant, there are similarities and differences compared to a normal personal training session. Similarities include strengthening, flexibility, mobility, warm-up and cool down. Differences include the focused muscle areas of strengthening and the purposes of flexibility and mobility exercises.
A pregnancy personal training session spends more time on strengthening muscle groups that help with labor and delivery. As the belly grows and the six pack of abs separates, the focus shifts to strengthening the deep core muscles. The amount of weight lifted during sessions is unique to each individual, however no personal records are trying to be set during pregnancy, rather maintaining/increasing strength in the muscles helpful during labor and delivery.
In addition to strengthening, flexibility and mobility exercises also look different in a pregnancy personal training session. Pregnancy hormones already create looseness in ligaments throughout the body, so the goal is not overall improved flexibility, but rather restore flexibility in tight muscles causing issues during pregnancy. Certain exercises are performed to maintain mama’s overall movement for the 40 weeks of pregnancy as her body changes. Other mobility exercises are performed to positively influence baby’s positioning for delivery.
Other components in a pregnancy personal training session that are similar to a normal personal training session, however muscle areas focused in strengthening and the goals of flexibility and mobility exercises look different in a pregnancy personal training session.