Exercises to Avoid During Pregnancy

Exercises are highly recommended for pregnant women as they keep them fit and pave way for a safe delivery. However, not all exercises are effective as some may do more harm than good to the mother and the unborn baby.

Gorreti Mbabazi, a nurse, recommends getting a doctor’s advice on which exercises are good before you start on any as an expectant mother.

“Some groups of people cannot exercise while pregnant. For example the asthmatic, people with health complications in their pregnancies among others, and can only do so under a doctor’s guidance,” she says.

Here is a list of exercises that pregnant women should avoid as guided by Ivan kyeyune, a gym instructor.

Carrying heavy weights

Avoid carrying heavy weights as these could cause accidents. However you can carry simple weights if you cannot avoid it at all.

Sit ups

After the 5th month, you can only do three sit ups as many could cause falls or stomach pains. Discontinue the exercise the moment you feel any pain. Sit ups involve pressing your core muscles which are around the stomach. This might exert a lot of pressure on the baby and cause complications.


Holding breaths

A number of exercises require you to hold your breath, this is highly discouraged as both you and your baby constantly need oxygen supply.


Exercises that need you to balance, for example standing on one leg are highly discouraged as they may cause accidents in the long run. The balancing ball workouts should be avoided too.

Intense exercises

Don’t do intensive exercises as these will burn you out. For example; intensive running, skipping, swimming among others. All these exercises can be done but gently and should be discontinued immediately if any pain arises.

Intense sport

Sports like football, basketball, net ball among others should be avoided as these could lead to knocks from teammates and heavy falls that may harm the baby.

Some of the safe exercises for expectant mothers


Running is highly recommended for pregnant women as it causes a whole body action, makes the body heat up hence sweating, cutting calories and reducing on body fats.

However Kyeyune notes that you should do it gently to avoid accidents.


This is a very harmless exercise. It’s recommended that you walk 20 to 30 minutes twice a day, preferably morning and evening. Walking is also a general exercise that heats up the whole body.


Pregnant women sitting in a meditative pose. (Photo courtesy: trendmods.com)

Meditation does no harm. Sit on a workout mat in a quiet place, it could be your house, garden or anywhere you feel comfortable and meditate. This will give you a peace of mind and regulate your breathing.


Did you know that stretching was an effective exercise? Well you can stretch within your bedroom and get the desired results. However, this should be done gently to avoid muscle pulls.

Eat healthy

Eat local foods and avoid junk, have plenty of fruits, homemade juice and plenty of water. Mbabzi says our health is 70% the things we eat, therefore during pregnancy, you should eat healthy.

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