Maintaining good posture throughout pregnancy is challenging, but your body will thank you if you do. Good posture can help limit common side effects in pregnancy such as headaches, pelvic girdle pain, shoulder pain, as well as improve respiratory capacity.
During pregnancy, a woman’s body weight increases by 15 to 25 percent; increasing the demand on tendons, ligaments, and joints. Additionally, hormones, such as relaxin and estrogen, loosen the ligaments and increase risk of injury. As the uterus and breasts grow, the body’s center of gravity shifts towards the front. The pelvis is tilted simultaneously, and the lower back curvature increases. All these changes require your muscles to adapt. With adequate strength, the body can better stabilize your posture and reduce risk of pain and injury with daily activities.
Tips to Help You Maintain Good Posture Throughout Pregnancy
- Look forward, elongate your neck, and tuck your chin slightly.
- Pull your shoulders down and back.
- Engage your core by lifting your belly button.
- Slightly bend your knees whenever standing to promote neutral pelvic alignment and reduce knee pain.
- See a women’s health Physical Therapist and/or prenatal exercise specialist.
Your body’s innate wisdom will carry you through, but specific strength training can go a long way in limiting discomforts associated with pregnancy. For more specific ideas about how to maintain your posture throughout your pregnancy, click here.