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Swimming While Pregnant

swimming-300wLet's Get Wet!

One of the "coolest" exercises for expectant women is swimming. Unlike some other forms of aerobic exercise, swimming really does keep you COOL. Because swimming is low-impact, easy on the joints and therefore carries minimal injury risk, most expectant mothers can swim for the entire pregnancy. Swimming lets you feel weightless no matter how much you gain! Swimming is a great way to get and stay fit during pregnancy Swimming is great exercise because it uses both large muscle groups, arms and legs.

A Good Time To Swim

Choose to swim early in the morning and/or during work hours, which means the pool will be mostly empty – and this has the benefit of meaning less noise and fewer people coughing and urinating in the pool as well, which creates a generally healthier environment. It will also reduce the chances of people swimming into you or children dive bombing right by your face.

Benefits of Swimming

  • Swimming laps improves circulation and muscle tone, and increases your endurance.
  • Swimming will make you feel less tired and enable you to sleep better.
  • Like any aerobic exercise, swimming boosts your body's ability to use oxygen, which is good for you and your baby.
  • A dip first thing in the morning may counteract the queasiness of morning sickness and energize you for the rest of the day.

Tips On Swimming 

  1. Get the green-light from your midwife or health care provider before you start swimming. It goes without saying you need to know how to swim.
  2. If you were not exercising before pregnancy, start slowly and if necessary take breaks to catch your breath.
  3. Buy a comfortable swimsuit, the last thing you need is to become chafed.
  4. Invest in some goggles, you will be glad you did.
  5. Choose a stroke that feels comfortable for you. Alternating between swimming on your front and floating on your back, gently kicking your legs, will give you a good all-round workout.
  6. One stroke to try is the breaststroke since it requires no rotation of the torso. If you feel pressure on your neck as you bob up, try using a snorkel. While pregnancy forces the spine and shoulders to round forward and the pelvis to tilt out of alignment, the breaststroke gently strengthens the muscles and counteracts that tendency.
  7. Rollover and try the backstroke. With water as your cushion you can lie on your back and do the backstroke without risking impaired blood flow than being on land can cause.
  8. If you feel fatigue, try adding a kick-board on every other lap to give your arms a rest.
  9. If you are swimming outdoors, don't forget your sunscreen!

Caution

Being in the water can make you feel deceptively hydrated. Take care not to get overheated or dehydrated. Keep a bottle of water near the pool's edge so you can drink every 15 minutes.