It’s great to see the actual physical evidence that your baby is growing day by day and there’s a strong temptation to stop worrying about your core and simply use your stomach as a handy place to rest your water bottle.
Losing your flat belly and perfectly chiselled abs is inevitable during pregnancy but maintaining the strength in your core has many benefits for your health, posture and postnatal recovery.
Keeping your core strong will improve your posture, helping to alleviate lower back pain; it can lessen the risk or severity of diastasis recti and you’ll be glad of those strong abs when it comes to delivering your baby. It’s well worth including regular core strength training as part of your pregnancy workout routine.
It will also help promote a speedier recovery after your baby is born.
Prenatal fitness expert Kimmy, pregnant with her second baby, demonstrates and explains her favourite core exercises for pregnancy.
She says ‘These pregnancy exercises don’t just work your core, they’ll also help work your thighs and glutes too!’
Stand with your back against the wall, feet hip width apart, arms pressing against the wall for balance.
Slide down the wall until your thighs are parallel (or almost parallel) with the floor. Return to standing.
5- 10 repetitions
Kneel on your mat, hands positioned beneath your shoulders and knees squarely below your hips. Make sure your back is in neutral with your head in line with your spin.
Engage your core.
Extend one arm out directly in front of you and lift the opposite leg straight out behind you.
Hold, breathe and lower.
5- 10 repetitions on each side
This will strengthen your thighs as well as your core and is good for improving your balance and coordination too.
Kneel on your right knee, with your right hand on the mat, using your extended right leg to balance.
Reach your left arm towards the ceiling. Keep your left leg extended, toes touching the floor.
Gently raise your left leg as high as feels comfortable, keeping your leg straight and in line with your body.
5- 10 repetitions and swap sides.
You might find it easier to balance with your upper hand on your hip.
Start by sitting comfortably on your fit ball, feet firmly on the floor, hip distance apart.
Step your feet forward, rolling ball up your spine until you’re in the bridge position with the ball under your upper back and shoulders with your knees bent at a 900 angle. Make sure your knees are positioned above your ankles.
Keep your arms relaxed, hands on either side of your bump. Engage your core and press your hips up toward the ceiling.
Slowly lower your hips back to the starting position.
Repeat 5- 10 times