18 November 2014

Prenatal Health & Fitness - Client recommendation

Dubai is such a transient place and in my experience it can be difficult to find really good practitioners, sources of information and people that you can trust, especially when it comes to being a first time mama, good recommendations are so important and highly revered. So I'm taking the recommendations that you give me during our sessions and sharing them with our little community in my newsletter and blog. If you have any people, topics, places that you can recommend or would like to write about please get in touch here and let me know what you think about sharing our good recommendations in the comments section below… I hope they're helpful to you! 

So to kick things off I thought I'd share with you a recommendation for a qualified PT from a recent maternity session…

I see so many expectant mamas that would like to continue exercising during pregnancy but are unsure of what they can do safely, and are even more unsure about who they can turn to for safe, informed advice, so I'm starting this sharing process with a little piece about prenatal exercise by the highly qualified pre and postnatal personal trainer and nutritionist, Anna Holmes. Anna was first recommended to me by my friend and client Jane, who, when we shot her maternity photos 2 days before her due date, was active, comfortable and healthy, she said, 'I had read about the benefits of exercising during pregnancy so knew I wanted to stay active but was nervous in case I did something wrong. Working out with Anna was great as she knew exactly how to adapt the exercises to suit me. Not only has it meant I have stayed healthy and not put on more weight than needed but I found that exercising also helped me sleep better'. 

Anna is a UK qualified Pre and Post Natal Exercise Practitioner who has taken care of prenatal clients from trimesters 1-3 (such as Jane), she was recently featured in The National, and comes highly recommended by Jane. She is a sweet, down to earth lady who makes you feel completely at ease, and even better she works for my personal favourite gym Smart Fitness

Below are some simple tips Anna has put together for you expectant mamas to keep fit and healthy during pregnancy, of course if you are new to exercise, especially during pregnancy you should consult your doctor or get in touch with Anna, here, for some advice before starting any exercise. 

Image Pawan Singh / The National

Guidelines for exercise during Pregnancy: Get Fit For Labour!

The more active and fit you are during pregnancy, the easier it is to adapt to the body's changing shape and any weight you may gain. Research shows that 'women who exercise little and often - say 30 minutes five times a week - tend to have easier births, shorter labours and quicker recovery times.'

The Benefits!
-Quicker postnatal recovery
-Reduced swelling
-Reduced labour pain
-Easier and shorter labours
-Offset postural imbalances as the body adapts
-Reduced lower back pain
-Reduced maternal weight gain

Points to consider:
Remember you are exercising purely to maintain a level fitness, this means working at a low intensity but increasing the heart rate above it's level of rest. Try this! The talk test: you should be able to continue a conversation throughout exercise if so you know you are working at an acceptable level of intensity.

An exercise session should always include a warm up before exercising, and cool down afterwards. 

Try to keep active on a daily basis; by elevating the core temperature of the body and increasing the blood flow, this promotes growth and development of the baby, as well as improving health of the mother.

20 min to an hour 3x a week is sufficient enough for each workout.

Exercise focused on the abdominals and lower body is highly beneficial to aid delivery and recovery after birth (this includes pelvic floor exercises!).

If you are used to exercise do not be afraid to continue as normal but decrease the intensity of work of each exercise - it may be advisable to hire a qualified PT if you are worried about what you can and cannot do as the body changes during each trimester.
Most importantly.. Listen to your body! More rests may need to be taken if you are feeling tired particularly into the third trimester.

For more info on the benefits of prenatal exercise please contact Anna here, she'd be more than happy to offer advice, and before making any changes to your diet or exercise regime be sure to consult your doctor and/or get in touch with Anna for some advice. 


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