7 Effective Exercises to do during pregnancy

During pregnancy, engaging in safe exercises is crucial for maintaining a healthy and balanced lifestyle. The incredible journey of pregnancy entails various physical and emotional transformations. By incorporating appropriate exercises into your routine, you can experience numerous benefits such as improved mood, increased energy levels, better sleep, reduced pregnancy discomfort, and overall enhanced well-being.

Prioritizing self-care ensures a healthy pregnancy and the delivery of a thriving baby. However, it is essential to select exercises that are both safe and suitable for your changing body. In this article, we will delve into the 7 essential exercises to do during pregnancy can undertake to stay fit and promote a healthy pregnancy.

7 Effective Exercises to do during pregnancy

Exercise during pregnancy offers numerous benefits that go beyond just physical fitness. However, not all exercises are suitable or safe for pregnant women. It is important to choose exercises that are specifically designed to accommodate the changes occurring in the body during pregnancy, while minimizing the risk of injury or complications. Here are 7 effective exercises that are highly recommended for pregnant women. These exercises have been carefully selected based on their safety, ability to target key muscle groups, and their overall benefits for the expectant mother.


Walking is a low-impact exercise that is safe and beneficial throughout the entire pregnancy. It helps to strengthen the cardiovascular system, improve circulation, and maintain a healthy weight. Walking also aids in reducing swelling in the legs and ankles, relieving backaches, and easing constipation, a common complaint during pregnancy. Aim for a brisk walk of 30 minutes or more, preferably in a supportive pair of shoes, on even surfaces, and avoid extreme weather conditions.

Prenatal Yoga

Prenatal yoga is a gentle form of exercise that focuses on stretching, relaxation, and controlled breathing. It helps to improve flexibility, balance, and posture while promoting relaxation and stress reduction. Prenatal yoga classes are specifically designed for pregnant women and are led by certified instructors who can provide modifications for each trimester. These classes often include poses that alleviate common discomforts such as back pain and sciatica, as well as breathing exercises that can be beneficial during labor. However, it’s important to avoid poses that involve lying flat on the back or any movements that strain the abdominal muscles.


Swimming and water aerobics are excellent exercises for pregnant women because they provide a low-impact, full-body workout while supporting the weight of the growing baby. The buoyancy of the water helps alleviate joint strain and reduces swelling. Swimming also helps strengthen the muscles, particularly the arms and legs, without putting excessive pressure on the joints. It can relieve back pain, improve circulation, and help regulate body temperature. Additionally, being in the water has a calming effect, which can reduce stress and promote relaxation. Remember to choose swimming strokes that are comfortable and avoid excessive breath-holding or diving, especially in later stages of pregnancy.

Pelvic Floor Exercises

The pelvic floor muscles play a crucial role in supporting the bladder, uterus, and bowel. During pregnancy, these muscles undergo significant changes and can become weakened, leading to issues such as urinary incontinence. Performing regular pelvic floor exercises, also known as Kegels, can help strengthen these muscles and prevent or alleviate such problems. To perform Kegels, simply contract the muscles used to stop the flow of urine and hold for a few seconds before releasing. Aim for three sets of 10 repetitions throughout the day.

Modified Strength Training

Strength training exercises can be beneficial during pregnancy, but it is important to modify them to ensure safety. Focus on exercises that target major muscle groups, such as squats, lunges, bicep curls, and shoulder presses. Use lighter weights or resistance bands to prevent straining or overexertion. Maintain proper form, avoid holding your breath, and always listen to your body. As pregnancy progresses, consider using a stability ball to perform exercises that engage the core and improve balance. Consult with a certified prenatal fitness instructor or your healthcare provider to ensure you are using proper techniques and appropriate modifications.

Stationary Cycling

Cycling on a stationary bike is a low-impact cardiovascular exercise that can be continued throughout pregnancy. It helps improve heart health, increases leg strength, and is gentle on the joints. Adjust the bike seat to a comfortable height, ensuring that there is no pressure on the abdomen. Start with a warm-up and gradually increase the intensity, monitoring your exertion level and avoiding overheating. Be cautious with balance and take care when getting on and off the bike. If you experience any pain, dizziness, or shortness of breath, stop and consult your healthcare provider.

Prenatal Pilates

Prenatal Pilates focuses on core strength, flexibility, and posture, essential aspects to support the changing body during pregnancy. These exercises target the abdominal, back, and pelvic floor muscles, helping to improve stability and reduce back pain. Prenatal Pilates classes are designed specifically for pregnant women and incorporate modifications to accommodate the growing belly. It is essential to work with a certified prenatal Pilates instructor who can guide you through the appropriate exercises and ensure correct form.

7 Exercises to do during pregnancy
7 Exercises to do during pregnancy

What exercises are not OK during pregnancy?

During pregnancy, it is generally advised to avoid certain exercises that may pose risks or excessive strain on the body. These include:

  • High-impact activities: Exercises that involve jumping, bouncing, or sudden movements, such as high-impact aerobics, intense running, or vigorous sports like basketball or tennis, should be avoided. They can increase the risk of falls, joint injuries, or abdominal trauma.
  • Contact sports: Participating in contact sports like soccer, hockey, or martial arts should be avoided during pregnancy due to the increased risk of abdominal injuries and falls.
  • Activities with a high risk of falling: Engaging in activities that have a high risk of falling, such as downhill skiing, snowboarding, or horseback riding, should be avoided due to the potential for serious injuries.
  • Exercises lying flat on your back: After the first trimester, it is recommended to avoid exercises that involve lying flat on your back for an extended period. This position can restrict blood flow to the uterus and may cause dizziness or reduced circulation.
  • Heavy weightlifting: Exercises that involve heavy lifting, particularly those that strain the core muscles or put excessive pressure on the abdomen, should be avoided. This includes heavy squats, deadlifts, or overhead presses.
  • Exercises with a high risk of abdominal trauma: Activities that involve sudden twists, jolts, or excessive pressure on the abdomen, such as deep twists or certain advanced yoga poses, should be avoided to minimize the risk of abdominal trauma.

It is important to note that every pregnancy is different, and individual circumstances may vary. Always consult with your healthcare provider before starting or continuing any exercise regimen to ensure it is safe for you and your baby. They can provide personalized advice based on your health, fitness level, and any specific considerations.

People also ask – Exercises to do during pregnancy

Which month should I start exercising during pregnancy?

You can start exercising during pregnancy at any time, gradually increasing from 10 to 30 or 40 minutes. Avoid contact sports (e.g., boxing, rugby, football) and activities with a risk of falling (e.g., horse riding, climbing). It is generally recommended to start exercising during the first trimester after consulting with your healthcare provider.

Which month should I start exercising during pregnancy for normal delivery?

Ideally, it is recommended to begin exercising before pregnancy or as early as possible during the first trimester for promoting a normal delivery. Consult with your healthcare provider for personalized advice.

What are the risks of exercise during pregnancy?

While exercise during pregnancy is generally safe and beneficial, there are potential risks such as injury, premature labor, or other complications. Consult with your healthcare provider before starting any exercise program.

Can I do squats while pregnant?

Squats can be safe during pregnancy if you modify the technique to accommodate your changing body and avoid excessive strain. Consult with your healthcare provider for personalized guidance.

Can I run during pregnancy?

Running can be safe if you were a regular runner before pregnancy and have a healthy pregnancy without complications. Listen to your body, monitor exertion levels, and consult with your healthcare provider for personalized advice.


Engaging in regular exercise during pregnancy offers numerous benefits for both the mother and the developing baby. The seven exercises outlined in this blog post – walking, prenatal yoga, swimming, pelvic floor exercises, modified strength training, stationary cycling, and prenatal Pilate, provide safe and effective ways to stay active throughout pregnancy. However, it is crucial to consult with your healthcare provider before starting any exercise program and listen to your body’s cues during workouts. Remember that every pregnancy is unique, and modifications may be necessary to accommodate individual needs and comfort levels. Stay active, stay safe, and enjoy the journey to a healthy pregnancy.

Disclaimer: The content of this blog is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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7 Effective Exercises to do during pregnancy
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