Mums-To-Be And Swimming
Swimming is one of the best forms of exercise that you can do while you are pregnant. Don’t let anyone tell you differently.
Swimming during pregnancy is safe and can help keep you in shape, relaxed and feeling good as your bump grows.
Swimming offers a relatively weightless environment. Water can support up to 90% of your body’s weight, which can offer you relief for half an hour!
A lot of women also find that swimming helps to ease swelling in their legs and feet, or even relieve sciatic pain because it's such a great way to get the circulation going.
Celebrity mum Penny Lancaster is a keen advocate of swimming before, during and after pregnancy. Hear her reasons in our video to the left.
- Some evidence suggests that swimming can encourage your baby to get into the best position for labour.
- Swimming also gives you a wonderful sense of well-being so it's great for stress-busting and relaxing.
- Check out our guidelines for swimming and pregnancy here.
Mythbusting pregnancy and swimming
Swimming while pregnant is safe when you follow our guidance. Just check with your midwife about anything you’re unsure about. Don't be put off by myths:
- Firstly, there is no evidence that active women who swim have more miscarriages or babies with birth defects.
- Swimming is not a cause of premature or problematic labour or low birth-weight babies.
- If you are a regular swimmer you can continue with your training programme providing there are no problems at your regular ante-natal checks, such as raised blood pressure, ankle swelling, bleeding, poor foetal growth, diabetes, anaemia, etc. Let your doctor or midwife know if they do develop.
With a little common sense there is no reason you shouldn’t enjoy swimming when pregnant, and you'll be in famous company.
Many well-know faces swam during their pregnancy, including, as you saw above, Penny Lancaster.
I use swimming as a form of fitness and it was particularly good while I was pregnant - Penny LancasterThe model and wife of veteran musician Rod Stewart said: "I use swimming as a form of fitness and it was particularly good while I was pregnant. You feel slimmer, you feel fitter and it's great for the whole family."
Actress Natalie Portman also revealed at the 2011 Golden Globe Awards that she'd been staying fit during her pregnancy by swimming every day.
She said: "When I am in my womb-like environment, I am hoping the baby is feeling peaceful."
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