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The benefits of pilates during pregnancy

Your body is changing rapidly when you’re pregnant. Whether you’re used to working out a lot, or not at all - it’s wise to keep moving and exercising. Pilates contains lots of elements that can be useful. Teacher MAXIME talks about the benefits of this workout during pregnancy - both physical and mental.

Physical benefits

“Pilates teaches you so much about your body. You'll find out which areas are strong, and which ones need a little bit more attention. Moreover, because pilates works so deep, controlled and precise, you'll learn how everything in your body is interconnected, and how you can work with your body. This is very valuable in a time when your body is changing on a daily basis, but also during labor and in getting back to know your body after pregnancy. Pilates strengthens your body and it focuses on good posture and mobility, which ultimately help prevent bodily discomfort during and after pregnancy. But it also creates awareness around breath and breathing techniques. If you are pregnant - actually in general, but especially when you're pregnant - I encourage you to listen to your body. Now is not the time to start pushing your limits with physical exercise. Build up your practice slowly and steadily, and always make sure you have the right guidance.”


Mental benefits

“Pilates - but actually any kind of movement or practice that feels right to you - encourages you to tune in with your body and your baby, your current mood, your feelings. Movement can totally help change the way you feel, and it can help you in accepting things as they are, as well. When practicing, the body releases endorphins that make you feel good. To me, pilates creates a greater awareness of my body and mind in periods of change. It also helps me control my thoughts and emotions. Plus - super important - it teaches me to relax and let go - also important during pregnancy!”

Go pregnant-proof

“A lot is possible when it comes to working out and pregnancy. I do however encourage you to go for specific pregnant-proof training, instead of continuing your regular routine. These pregnant-proof workouts are safe and supportive for your changing body, and they often prepare you for labor in a way as well, for example because they incorporate conscious breathing or movement patterns that can be useful when giving birth.”


Do or don’t - training your abs

“ I think there is a huge misconception about not having to train the abdominal muscles during pregnancy. Yes, from your second trimester onwards you want to avoid training your rectus abdominis, but training your transversus abdominis - the deepest muscle layer - is actually a good idea throughout your entire pregnancy. Why? Because these muscles support your posture and your growing belly, and therefore they can help avoid a lot of common pregnancy complaints. Consult the guidance of an expert when in doubt about which abdominal exercises to do.”

Just breathe

“Breath is an important tool. In pilates, we use it to stabilize the body and to regulate core pressure during exercises. We practice inhaling - expanding the rib cage to the side and back - which comes in handy when your baby starts taking up more space in your belly, and there is less room for your lungs to expand. Breath is a tool that might help you connect with your baby, and to be and feel more in the here and now. During labor, a big and expansive breath - an inhale that expands from the pelvis to the belly, all the way up to the rib cage and chest, followed by an exhale that is releasing and that opens up the body - could help to work with instead of against surges. This conscious way of breathing can also give you a sense of control, while at the same time letting all those sensations travel through your body.”

Would you like more information regarding movement and pregnancy or are you interested in a class? Go find STUDIO MAMAISON on Instagram and reach out to Maxime via a DM.

ps. Our legging is perfect for your pilates workout - or any other workout, by the way. Find it here

Atelier Melon legging

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