Forum: Advice / Health & Nutrition

Health & Nutrition
Dancing and Pregnancy
By jaime Comments: 14, member since Sun Mar 07, 1999
On Wed Oct 12, 2016 01:22 PM

I've often heard that dancers and farmers tend to have the healthiest pregnancies and most uncomplicated deliveries. This is attributed to the fitness and endurance that these activities help develop. There's also the wonderful mental and emotional benefits for you (and by extension, your baby!) that dancing provides. Taking into account, of course, that every pregnancy (and every pregnant body) is different, and barring any advice to the contrary from your doctor, you can plan on continuing to dance during this very special time in your life! Here are some dos (and a few don'ts) to help you keep on dancing gracefully through pregnancy. Do: -Continue with a good stretching and warm-up routine. Pregnancy hormones cause ligaments to loosen and this may make you more prone to injury. -Stay very well hydrated. Drinking plenty of fluids is especially important to avoid overheating. Go ahead and add another bottle of water to your dance bag. -Know your limits and respect them. The first trimester of pregnancy is particularly exhausting, and you may find your energy levels are more quickly depleted. Stop your routine if you have any pain or dizziness, and ease up the next time. -Consider consulting a prenatal/postpartum dance instructor to help you make the necessary modifications for your particular pregnancy and dance style. If you're a seasoned dancer, you can continue with your regular classes - just be sure to let your instructor know you're pregnant. -Expand your wardrobe to fit that growing baby bump and keep you comfortable. Some women's feet also expand during pregnancy, so you may need to size up your dancing shoes too! Avoid: -Moves that could result in a fall, such as being lifted high. Your center of gravity shifts during pregnancy, making it harder to maintain balance. You may also find your coordination is not as smooth as before, and this is perfectly normal. Try keeping one foot on the floor at all times to help stabilize yourself. -Very high-impact dancing. Try modifying your routine to put less strain on your joints and growing belly if you start to feel uncomfortable. Hip hop and Tap dancers may find this the most necessary during the last trimester. Above all, dancing should serve to enhance your sense of well-being during pregnancy. Your body is doing an amazing thing and honoring that is what's most important. Please share your own experiences on dancing during pregnancy!