My Client Has Just Fallen Pregnant. Can They Do Core Exercises?

Author: Sean Mcrory

There is no doubt that the first trimester of pregnancy is a very stressful and worrying stage, especially for first-time mothers. The first question your client will ask is, if they can continue to work out and which core exercises are safe to do?

The first instruction we give our clients when they tell us they’re pregnant is SPEAK TO YOUR DOCTOR. Make sure the doctor knows previous exercise history and what they’re currently doing. The medical professional will advise accordingly. In our experience the response is usually the same, that is, if your body is used to a certain level of exercise and intensity then you should be fine to continue for that first trimester.

As a Fitness Trainer you can plan your clients exercise routine around their doctor’s advice. The next piece of advice we give to our clients is based around being realistic and not undertaking any core exercises that they’re not comfortable with. “If it doesn’t feel right, then don’t do it.” A good trainer will have alternative exercises.

In regards to, what core exercises the client can and can’t do during the first trimester this is down to the individual. Once again if their body is used to a constant level of core work then you should be fine to continue. But it’s important to remember that once you enter the second trimester there are several exercises and positions they need to avoid.

A topic that’s important to discuss with pregnant client(s) is the release of the hormone Relaxin. This hormone does exactly what its name entails, it relaxes the muscles and allows them to stretch in preparation for the growth of the baby. This can leave your clients open to minor muscle strains, so they need to be careful. 

An issue to be mindful of during the first trimester is abdominal separation or to use its technical term Diastasis Recti. During pregnancy, the growing uterus puts stress on the two middle bands of the ab muscles. This can cause them to separate leaving a gap down the mid part of the stomach. 

If you are a Sub30 Core™ subscriber check out your membership page for alternative exercises that your clients can undertake if they have diatasis recti. 

What we have learnt over the years is that every pregnancy is different,

energy levels, sickness, capabilities and motivation will vary from person to person. In other words, listen to the body. As we mentioned above if they feel uncomfortable STOP.

Finally, if at any stage they feel nauseous, dizzy, lightheaded, experience abdominal pain or bleeding, contact the doctor immediately.

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