Physical activity during pregnancy

Pregnant individual outside holding a blue yoga mat with a white towel on shoulderAre you pregnant? Not sure whether to start or to continue being physically active during your pregnancy?  Well, you are not alone.

As a public health nurse working with expectant mothers, I have frequently been asked about the safety of being physically active during pregnancy.


  • improves muscle tone and cardiovascular fitness
  • promotes appropriate weight gain
  • reduces discomforts of pregnancy
  • improves mood, energy level and feelings about appearance
  • improves sleep
  • can prevent high blood sugar and/or gestational diabetes
  • assists with having an easier and shorter labour
  • helps with faster recovery and return to a healthy weight.

Studies show that pregnant individuals who participate in moderate physical activity will benefit from improved health, and an increased chance of having a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby

Safety Tips:

  • Begin slowly.
  • Choose low impact activities, such as walking, stationary cycling, swimming, water exercise or low impact aerobics
  • Drink water before, during and after your activity to replace body fluids lost when you sweat.
  • Include a quick 10-15min.warm up before and 10-15min cool down period after your activity
  • Good moderate physical activity includes walking or activities that allow you to sweat a little and breathe a little harder, and allows you to talk while you exercise.
  • If you don’t feel well, stop the activity and contact your health care provider right away

Be sure to consult with your health care provider before starting any physical activity.

Check out our site for great tips on staying active in Toronto.

To learn more about physical activity during pregnancy, please connect with our nurses via eChat or call (416) 338-7600.

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