As a working woman, make sure you are keeping yourself fit during your pregnancy. Here are 4 office exercises during pregnancy which you can do right from the comfort of your work desk.
Last Updated: 22 October 2020
Backaches, feet swelling, bloating – pregnancy has to endure all of its symptoms, but not if you choose a fitter pregnancy! A regular pregnancy exercise regime is essential not only for a healthy pregnancy but also for easy labor.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends at least 20 to 30 minutes of pregnancy exercise per day on most days or all the days of the week. Even if you have never practiced a workout before, you can start a new, fit life when you are pregnant.
If work life snatches your time away for a regular physical activity, you can choose to do office exercises during pregnancy. Begin by trying one or more of the pregnancy exercises below that suit your workspace and culture the best.Walking
What can be easier than walking, and without the need of going out to a gym or having to buy special equipment? Walking is an ideal cardio exercise during pregnancy to improve the overall blood circulation in your body. A brisk walk for 30 minutes or three 10-minute walks spread across in a day is enough to keep your heart and your baby healthy. One or two of the three 10-minute walks can be done at your office. You can as well break them to four 5-minute walks according to your convenience and availability of time.
Here’s a general guideline to make walking during pregnancy safe:
· Look for a comfortable walking space without uneven surfaces or blocks (like unclean floors or wet floors) that can make you stumble or slip while walking.
· Try to have your spine straight as you walk. It can keep your chest expanded, aiding in maximum breathing which can help you from falling short of breath.
· If you face breathlessness, rest or take a break until you feel alright.Stretching
A stiff spine that results from being seated in one place at a fixed position for long hours together can do no good to your pregnancy health. It can make your back pain worse. However, a few seconds of stretching your body can make your spine flexible which can not only alleviate your pregnancy discomforts but can also support during labor.
· Once in every hour while you are at your work desk, gently raise your arms over your head, interlock your fingers, turn them outwards, inhale and stretch your body from the base of your spine.
· When you feel you have reached the maximum stretch, slowly breathe out and bring your arms down.
· Repeat it when you sense stiffness at your back, neck or around your hips.Rotation
As your pregnancy progresses, you may experience swelling because of water retention in your hands and feet. Office exercises during pregnancy such as gentle rotating movements of your extremities can make you feel better.
· Start with neck rotation by drooping down your neck first, and then slowly swaying your head in a clockwise motion while keeping your neck muscles loose. Repeat in the opposite direction.
· Rotate your shoulders making big circles with your arms in both directions.
· Gently rotate at your wrist and open and close your close your fingers to prevent them from puffing up too much.
· While you are seated in your office chair, stretch your leg forward and rotate at your ankle in both directions. Your feet are most likely to swell in the third trimester and you can try to keep your feet raised on a stool if you have to work for long hours at a desk.Kegels
You could not have missed hearing about kegels during your pregnancy! It is one of the most important pregnancy exercises. As your bump gets heavier, the weight of the baby exerts a lot of pressure on your bladder. It may weaken your pelvic muscles causing to leak urine when you laugh hard, cough or sneeze, called urinary incontinence. If kegels is not practiced during and post pregnancy, urinary incontinence may continue to bother you post delivery, for the rest of your life because the pelvic muscles cannot tighten up on its own.
Here’s how kegels is done:
· While you are sitting in your office chair, tighten up your pelvic muscles. The way to do this is to contract the muscles in your vagina as though you are trying to hold urine when your bladder is full.
· Hold the pelvic muscles for 5 seconds and then loosen.
· Do kegels at least twice a day. With practice, you can increase the holding up time to 10 seconds.