A piece of advice any doctor will give to a pregnant woman is to follow a good and nutritious diet and perform some exercises, including toning exercises. Many pregnant women are scared to exercise, in fear their baby will be harmed. If the right exercises are done and they are done properly, there will be no damage done to the growing baby or to the body. A good exercise to be performed during pregnancy is leg lifts.
Legs lifts are a basic and simple exercise to be done during pregnancy because no special equipment is needed. The body will do all of the work and will act as its own weight resistance. This exercise can be done directly on the floor or can also be done on a mat to add a bit of cushion. When doing legs lifts, or any exercise, be sure to drink plenty of water before, during and after exercising. Pregnant women especially need to drink enough water so they do not run the risk of becoming dehydrated.
How to Do Leg Lifts
Leg lifts are done by lying on the floor on your side. Be sure that your shoulders, hips and knees are in a straight line. Bend the arm on the floor side of the body to hold up and support the head. The opposite arm can also be used as support by placing it out in front and placing it firmly on the ground. When in position, slowly lift the top leg as high as comfortable. Slowly lower that leg back to the starting position. Repeat this movement a total of 10 times and then switch to the opposite leg. Repeat this exercise on each side a second time.
Benefits of Leg Lifts
To get the most benefit out of this exercise, perform this at least three times a week. There are many benefits to doing this exercise. During pregnancy, there is additional weight that is carried around. The legs will get the brunt of this additional weight. When the legs are strong, the weight is easier to carry and posture will benefit. A pregnant woman will stand up straighter and there may be less back pain especially in the final months of pregnancy.
Stronger leg muscles will also pay off during labor and delivery. With the legs being stronger, when the time comes to push, there may be less strain put on the body. Working out also improves circulation. When the circulation is flowing better, there may be a reduction in the amount of leg cramps and the amount of swelling that happens. Ankle swelling is a common occurrence during pregnancy and improved circulation may help to combat this.
Working out and toning during pregnancy has many benefits, both mental and physical. The body will begin to look better and that would improve the mood of anyone. The body changes a lot during pregnancy and doing things to help and improve those changes will be beneficial in the long run.