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Exercising While Pregnant


Unless there are medical reasons to avoid it, pregnant women can and should exercise moderately for at least 30 minutes on most, if not all, days. Benefits of exercise may include preventing too much weight gain, increased stamina for labor and delivery, promoting timely recovery after delivery, and enhancing well-being while pregnant.

If you are not used to a regular exercise routine, build up your level of activity gradually. Do not overdo it. You should be able to get your heart rate up and be able to talk at the same time. When you exercise, pay attention to your body and how you feel. If you have any serious problems, such as vaginal bleeding, dizziness, headaches, chest pain, decreased fetal movement or contractions, stop exercising and contact your doctor for advice.

Not all pregnant women should exercise. If you are at risk of preterm labor or have a serious medical condition, please discuss your exercise plans with your doctor before starting.

Activities to avoid:

  • Activities with high risk of injury (horseback riding, downhill skiing, outdoor biking)
  • Activities with risk of trauma to abdomen (kickboxing, soccer)
  • Lying flat on your back while exercising (especially later in pregnancy)
  • Scuba diving
  • Amusement park rides, including roller coasters

Click here for more information on exercise during pregnancy.

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