My Favorite "Non-pregnant" Group Fitness Classes for During Pregnancy
Are you a "class junkie"? Me too!!
I LOVE to get pushed by another person and get out of my routine. Many of my clients feel the same way... and when they get pregnant that doesn't have to change!
For most women, early on in pregnancy we typically don’t need to make many changes. As your pregnancy progresses, however, not all of your favorite classes are safe without modifications.
Hint - no matter what class you're taking, you MUST tell your instructor that you are expecting. ** But keep in mind that not all Group Fitness Professionals are equal. Every cert includes a paragraph or two on guidelines for training pregnant women, but it's not enough. Unfortunately, many are those who assume that they know what they’re doing because they worked out when they were pregnant. (This is not a thing.) Also- guidelines change all the time. If your instructor isn’t up on the latest research, he or she may be giving you bad advice. Please check out my recommendations before you go to class and take any advice from a non-specialized instructor with a grain of salt.
One last thing ---- Each of your pregnancies may be different, so please don’t let the comparison game lead your decisions on what classes or exercises to skip.
Here are a brief list of my favorite "non-prenatal" group fitness classes:
Zumba, PlyoJam, low-impact dance classes
Water Aerobics/ Sculpting
Pilates / Prenatal yoga
Did your favorite miss the list?
Here's the deal--- with classes like kickboxing, step aerobics, kettlebell, crossfit, and non-prenatal yoga- they either are very rough on the joints, have a high-fall risk, have a risk of hitting your belly, or can be very prone to encourage diastasis recti. You are welcome to continue to do these as you see fit, however, please keep all of my recommendations in mind so you don’t create a diastasis as your bump grows. (Follow me here for more information on Diastasis Recti.)
Every class you take during your pregnancy will feel different, but as a general rule:
Skip forward-facing planks or crunches and opt for an all-fours move, modified plank, head lift, reverse crunch, or do your own thing once you've started showing. Your instructor will not take it personally. This is to help avoid the intra-abdominal pressure that can contribute to diastasis recti.
Avoid putting a barbell on your back if your pelvis feels "off" -- use dumbbells instead.
Remember to NOT go above a 7 on a scale of 1-0. Keep humming to the music. If it's appropriate to talk, you should be able to keep a conversation. In general, don't push too hard. You might want to. It’s going to feel really fun but it’s not worth it.
STOP and rest if you need it!
Create a pregnancy mantra, if you haven’t already
Pregnancy is a new workout, and it's one that you already do all day long, So, your favorite classes might feel different, but that doesn't mean you have to give them up. I teach many different class styles, and continued to during my pregnancy, just made some modifications along the way. My signature classes that I teach here in Denver are designed specifically for the challenges of pregnancy and labor, but also to meet the demands of motherhood. If you're local, hit me up and I'll send you details! If you're not, hit me up here for online training. I'm here to help you every step of the way.