Swimming Guidelines For Mums-To-Be
Swimming while pregnant is safe when you follow our guidance. Just check with your midwife about anything you’re unsure about.
Who says you can't swim when pregnant? Check out our swimming introduction for mums-to-be here.Myths and fictions about pregnancy and swimming can put mums-to-be off going to the pool. Don't let this happen to you.
With a little common sense there is no reason you shouldn’t continue to enjoy swimming right into your pregnancy. And to help we’ve put this guide together using all the ASA's experience and knowledge.
- Early in pregnancy, all strokes are suitable.
- In late pregnancy, breaststroke may be beneficial as it promotes good posture and strengthening of the back and chest muscles.
- Backstroke is probably not such a good idea in late pregnancy as the baby may cause pressure on the main blood vessels in the abdomen.
- You can still enjoy a really good aerobic workout, although because of the lack of research in this area, flat-out effort is best avoided during pregnancy - pulse rate is normally higher in pregnancy and heart rate can be monitored in the usual way to avoid excessive demands.
- Remember to eat well as the calorie requirement for the same level of exercise increases in pregnancy. Provided your blood tests are satisfactory and you eat a well-balanced diet, there should be no need for additional supplementation.
- If training for more than 30 minutes or so, ensure you drink plenty of fluids supplemented with a little glucose. Your doctor or midwife will be able to advise you where necessary.
- If you ever feel light-headed, dizzy, breathless, notice an irregular heartbeat, experience lower abdominal pain or uterine contractions, bleed vaginally or lose fluids you should leave the water immediately and seek expert advice.
- If you have a history of recurrent miscarriage, ruptured membranes, early labour, a weak cervix, multiple pregnancies or heart and lung disease you may want to take advice from your midwife or doctor before starting a new swimming programme.
- Expectant mothers may find tumble turns lead more easily to acid reflux into the mouth due to the rise in pregnancy hormones. This means diving off blocks and belly-flops are best avoided.