Exercise during the third trimester

Pregnancy and exercise during the third trimester  

A very important subject that all pregnant women are confronted with is what kind of exercises will help them prepare their body for the labour day. There are some useful advises for helping them alleviate aches and pains. These exercises will further open up the hips and pelvis strengthening the muscles that will be used during childbirth.


Pelvic Floor Exercises

The pelvic floor supports the internal organs, including the uterus. The uterus is where the baby lies in the third trimester when he has reached a big size. Due to the fact that the pelvic floor muscles are overstretched and weakened underneath the baby weight, it is important to do pelvic floor exercises. These exercises are called Kegels. Kegels help to maintain the tone of the muscles such as preventing the embarrassing leaking by laughing or sneezing. This condition is called stress urinary incontinence. Stress urinary incontinence is a common condition specially in the third trimester, which can also persist after the baby comes.


Squats are very useful to prepare the body for pregnancy and labour. They increase glute muscles strength and as a consequence lower back pain and hip pain are reduced. Since the Pelvic Floor Muscle (PFM) must be supple and taught, the squats are useful because they strenghten this muscle in preparation for pushing, prepares to hold better suited birth positions and at the end, it helps to descend the baby deeper in to your pelvis. The squats can be done by placing a rolled-up towel or yoga matt under your heels if they don’t reach the ground. This position is to be done five or six times a day starting with 30 seconds at a time and then slowly work it up to two minutes. Avoid this exercise if there is a pain in the spot in front of the lower middle pelvis area where the pubic bones meet (pubic symphysis). The above mentioned Kegels exercises can be done in this position as well.


Soft Abdominals (Abs)

This exercise can be done in a gentle way in the third trimester as well as long as it doesn’t over strain the abdominal muscles. A basic pelvic tilt is safe at all stages.