5 Bodyweight Exercises To Do During Pregnancy

5 Bodyweight Exercises To Do During Pregnancy

Exercises designed for expecting moms. Stay fit and healthy throughout every stage of your pregnancy with these five (5) movements. No equipment needed!

Published: January 5, 2022

Topics: Strength & Conditioning, Training

Author: Shanie "Smash" Rusth

Staying active during your pregnancy can help prepare your body for easier labor and birth, and help reduce the risk for pregnancy complications and discomfort. Plus, exercise will help you feel good and stay fit, both during your pregnancy and postpartum.

Before starting any exercise regime, especially when you’re pregnant, be sure to check with your healthcare provider to get clearance first. I would not recommend starting any sort of new workout or training during your pregnancy that you didn’t do beforehand. For example, if you’ve never boxed or kickboxed before getting pregnant, pregnancy would not be the best time to start. In general, pregnant women should avoid high-impact exercise, contact sports, and exercising in environments where there is a risk of overheating, such as a hot yoga class. My golden rule is to, above all, listen to your body. If something doesn’t feel right, don’t do it!

So how can you ensure you are exercising safely and effectively during your pregnancy? Here are five (5) exercises that are generally safe to do when you’re pregnant--no equipment needed!

5 Bodyweight Exercises For Pregnancy

Sumo Squat

Sumo Squat Exercise
  • Stand with your feet pointed outward and legs slightly wider than shoulder-width distance apart

  • Hold your arms straight out in front of you and keep your back straight

  • Inhale and squat down

    • The goal is to lower your body until your legs are slightly lower than parallel to the floor BUT listen to your body and modify as needed to keep that precious cargo safe

  • Exhale and push back up through your heels and return to stand, making sure not to lock your knees out at the top

  • Repeat for 10 reps

Tricep Dips

Tricep Dip Exercise
  • Begin in a seated position on a sturdy bench or chair with something soft underneath you, like a fitness mat or carpet

  • Grip the edge of the surface on either side of your hips

  • Slide yourself forward so you are supporting yourself only with your arms (and feet on the floor)

  • Bend at your elbows to lower your body 3-5 inches down

  • Push yourself back up

  • Test your range of motion once and as soon as you feel comfortable repeat for 10 reps total

Wall Sit

Wall Sit Exercise
  • Stand with your back against a wall and slide down, bending your knees until they are at about a 90-degree angle

    • Your thighs should be parallel to the ground like you are sitting in an invisible chair

  • Hold for 30 seconds or as long as advised before returning to stand

Side Plank

Side Plank Exercise
  • Lie on your right side with your legs extended out straight and your feet stacked on top of each other

  • Push up onto your right forearm with your elbow should be directly underneath your shoulder

    • Your head should be directly in line with your spine

  • Extend your left arm along the side of your body

  • Engage your abdominal muscles, drawing your navel towards your spine

  • Exhale and lift your hips and knees up off the mat

  • Be sure not to sag or drop your hips as you hold for 30 seconds

  • Switch to your left side and hold for another 30 seconds

Side-Lying Clam

Side-Lying Clam Exercise
  • Lie on your left side with your hips and knees bent, legs stacked, and feet together

  • Keeping your left leg on the floor, raise your right knee as high as you can without separating your heels

  • Pause, then return to start

  • That's one rep

  • Repeat for 24 more reps

  • Switch to your right side and repeat for 25 reps

Bodyweight Workout

Ready to get moving? Put the five exercises above into a basic workout to make sure you’re in the best shape for your delivery. Adjust these movements, hold times, and reps as needed for your first, second, and third trimesters.

  • Sumo Squat (10 reps)

  • Tricep Dips (10 reps)

  • Wall Sit (30 seconds)

  • Side Plank (30 seconds, each side)

  • Side-Lying Clam (25 reps, each leg)

  • Repeat 4 times

Working out while pregnant is one of the best things for a mom-to-be to do. It can help you not only physically, but mentally. Be safe. Listen to your doctor, and to your body.

Once your baby is here and you're ready to start your regular at-home fitness routine, myself and the other FightCamp Trainers will be here to help you ease into your boxing and kickboxing regimen.

I want to know what workouts feel good in your body. Send me a message on Instagram @shaniesmash or in the FightCamp Facebook Community.

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Shanie "Smash" Rusth

Shanie "Smash" Rusth is an undefeated pro MMA fighter, FightCamp Trainer, and mother of two. She began MMA in 2011 to get in shape and feel empowered after becoming a single mom. Shanie is USA Boxing Coach certified.

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