During pregnancy, keeping fit and active helps you adjust to the changes that your body is experiencing as you are approaching your due date. Also, staying healthy and active can help pregnant women cope with the usual demands of labour as well as recover faster after the baby is born. Splashers 121 specialise in Aqua Natal classes and express “the controlled environment has a direct effect on the muscles and the mind”.
Aqua natal classes are quickly increasing in popularity. They offer a holistic workout in the water and the classes are led by a professional instructor. Aqua natal classes offer an enjoyable way of remaining active during pregnancy, and they are beneficial in several ways to pregnant women.
These water-based exercise classes offer the safest way for pregnant women to exercise, as the water fully supports the weight of their bump.
They provide a highly effective workout
The unique combination of muscle toning and cardiovascular exercises will keep you looking fabulous throughout pregnancy.
Prepares your body for labour
Aqua natal classes prepare your body for labour by building stamina and physical strength as well as keeping your body flexible during pregnancy.
Relieving trigger points
Pregnant women with pelvic girdle pain usually experience painful trigger points (these are small contraction knots within the muscle) in their gluteus muscles, which results from the tension that is caused by pubic pain. When it comes to aqua natal sessions, there’s a static stretching phase meant for preparing your muscles for the next water-based exercise. This is great relief because your muscles will benefit from moving instead of remaining in a jarring and tense state. Manual therapy and acupuncture can be useful in releasing those knots or triggers.
Stress relief and well-being
The aquatic environment can offer temporary, immense relief from pain and stress. Evidence suggests that moving through water releases 4 times the endorphins (the natural opiates in your body, designed to relieve pain and stress while at the same time enhancing pleasure) than are usually released when you move on dry land. Movement in water always causes the water molecules to start tumbling over each other and stick to your skin and stimulate it.
Generally, aqua natal classes manage postnatal and antenatal depression by releasing natural endorphins into your body. As a result, the classes significantly reduce the probability and severity of psychiatric disorders often associated with childbirth and pregnancy.
Uniquely, this relieves stress on your weight-bearing joints and allows movement to occur with reduced gravitational forces. Aqua natal exercises often occur in chest-deep water, hence you’ll only experience 25 to 30 per cent of your body weight, which provided a comfortable medium for you to exercise in.
Water temperature is ideal for pregnant women
When it comes to temperature, most public swimming pools are always kept at 28-29 C. This is below optimal for someone who is pregnant. The ideal temperature should be 31-32 C because this will put the minimum of strain on pregnant women.
Usually, aqua natal workouts, led by a well-trained instructor, will include only the exercises that are suitable during pregnancy. For instance, twists, ply metric jumps, wide-leg side step and deep squats are not regarded as appropriate since they can cause injury or pain.
Strengthen your tummy muscles
Frontal resistance will occur when your body is low in the water during your session. This will produce a large surface area that will push against the water in the opposite direction of forwarding motion. This will help in strengthening your tummy muscles as you are moving through the water while you work out. Also, this resistance can support your pelvis as well as strengthen your quadriceps and abductor muscles.
Specific muscle work
Different forces such as hydrostatic pressure, resistance, turbulence and buoyancy all act cooperatively to make the effort of trying to maintain an upright posture a great challenge to the core stability of a pregnant woman. Hydrostatic pressure is a force that applies to all the surfaces of your body that remain immersed in water during aqua natal workouts. This beneficial effect is an inward squashing force that you feel on your body. This can significantly decrease swelling on your lower limbs and help relieve joint pain.
Increases core plus pelvic floor strength
This is paramount to women who are pregnant and following birth. A suitably experienced and well-trained instructor includes guidance when you are doing the gentle aerobic workout, explaining how you can maintain a healthy, strong pelvic floor. This includes movements to strengthen your muscles and promote endurance of pelvic diaphragm, which will help in keeping the integrity of your muscles and maintain continence.
Starts the swimming journey for your baby
Familiar sounds of the pool will ensure that your baby will be relaxed in water after delivery.
The mixture of relaxation techniques and physical exercises will help you have a good night sleep.
Shirley Mist has been involved in fashion and design for many years. She has also written extensively for many online publications. She currently writes for The Tribune World and is a valued member of our team.