Is it safe to go bowling when you’re pregnant?
In a word, yes. But, with any pregnancy exercise, it’s best to take a few precautions before signing up for your local bowling league.
As your pregnancy progresses, you’ll start dropping things. Constantly. This isn’t just because your little peanut is kicking you harder than usual, causing you to lose your balance or grip on your favorite coffee mug.
This is due to your powerful body getting ready to deliver your babe by releasing the hormone “relaxin.”
The goal of this aptly named hormone is to help your birthing parts literally “relax” to prepare for child birth. But, it has some side effects that can be a little frustrating.
Your ligaments and joints are stretching out a bit as they make room for your little one which is going to throw off your center of balance.
This doesn’t apply to the body parts used for childbirth, your hands, feet, arms and even face are going to be affected. Since you also use your hips, hands and legs to toss a bowling bowl down that shiny lane, be aware that you may not get that coveted perfect score.
The best exercising advice I heard during my pregnancy was “if you didn’t exercise like this before you were pregnant, it probably isn’t best to start while you are pregnant.”
Follow that advice while out at the alley by grabbing a lighter ball when your turn rolls around. Heck, even do the “grandma style” of bowling. That’s a sure fire way to alleviate any concerns about your potential gutter balls.
If you have any health concerns, you should always consult your doctor first. Bowling can cause strains in certain muscles and aggravate preexisting conditions.
I’m not interested in bowling, what other types of exercise are there?
There are plenty of low impact activites that you can do while pregnant. These suggestions will help you maintain that pre-mama body and alleviate some of those pesky pregnant symptoms we all love to hate.
Just Keep Swimming
If you are pregnant during the summer, take advantage of those warm days and head to your local outdoor public pool. Enjoy it when that teenage lifeguard blows their whistle and yells “adult swim time!” Swim a few laps then reward yourself with a trashy magazine. Ahem, I definitely meant top-rated parenting book.
The great thing about swimming is that it will help cool you down. Any pregnant lady knows how appreciated that little cool off can be in the middle of July. Just make sure you stay hydrated when you vacate the pool. Dehydration + pregnancy isn’t a fun combo.
If you are lucky enough to have a great indoor pool nearby, join it! Use those pre-determined swimming lanes to feel weightless (for once). Swimming is great because it doesn’t put pressure on your hands or ankles. That little trick will help alleviate any of your swollen extremities. There might even be a few classes for pregnant ladies that you can join. Group classes are less intimidating and you might make some new pregnancy and mama friends!
Pre-natal yoga classes are your friend. While they are basically glorified stretching, you’ll be so happy you went. If you were a yogi before you became pregnant, you’ll be able to maintain your positions with some slight modifications. Because of the aforementioned “relaxin,” you are going to be a bit off center which can make positions like Warrior a little wobbly.
If you are new to yoga, don’t worry! Find a reputible local yoga studio that offers pre-natal classes. Usually, studios will give you your first class at a discount if you’ve never been. Let your instructor know that you’ve never been to a class before you start. Being upfront with any specific issues you’ve been having will help make your class more effective.
Each trimester is going to present a new list of challenges to your ever changing bod. The nice thing about yoga is that it is totally adaptable to however you’re feeling. If you are nauseous and want to hang out in child’s pose for 45 minutes, do your thing girlfriend. If you are struggling with hip pain, your instructor can guide you through poses to stretch those core muscles.
The real perk? Savasana is basically a glorified nap complete with essential oils.
Walk It Out
Get back to basics with this tip. No matter what time of year, you can find a place to take a brisk walk. Grab a girlfriend and head to your closest mall. Take a few laps while also hitting up your favorite sales. Two birds, one stone.
If you happen to have a treadmill in your house or apartment, that’s an even bigger perk. Tune in to your favorite show and walk it out for a half hour. Or, towards the ninth month, waddle it out. Even a brief bout of low impact exercise like walking will help you out during your pregnancy.
Not only does walking cover the basics like maintaining your pre-pregnancy weight and boost your heart health. It has also been said that exercise during pregnancy can potentially create a shorter, easier labor. Another perk? It can help to ease the dreaded pregnancy constipation. That right there is reason enough to get walking.
Again, if you have any health concerns or problems, please consult with your doctor. Low impact exercise can be a definite add to your pregnancy but only if it is safe and healthy for you and your babe. Take it easy and have fun.