Low back pain is a common occurrence during pregnancy. The growth of the uterus changes your center of gravity and puts extra strain on your lower back. Weak muscles in the back and abdomen prior to pregnancy can lead to worsening symptoms.
Prevention and Treatment: Maintain good posture and use good body mechanics when changing positions or lifting heavy items, wear a pregnancy support belt, try these exercises:
The Squat: Stand with your back against a wall. Lower your body slowly down the wall, with your hands against the wall, until you are in a squatting position. Keep you feet parallel and your heels flat against the floor. Then slowly raise yourself back up. A variation of this exercise is to place an exercise ball between your lower back and the wall while doing the squat and feet out in front of you, in a wide stance.This can help maintain proper positioning during the exercise. This exercise will help strengthen your back and it is good practice for proper lifting of heavy weights.
Wide-stance Bodyweight Squats
With your feet slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and toes slightly turned out, cross your hands across your chest or straight hands front of you. Keeping your chest out and shoulders back, lower directly down towards the ground until your legs are parallel to the ground. Use your heels to press back up to the starting position and repeat the exercise.
Here are 2 of my favorite "Pregnancy abdominal exercises” that are not only safe to perform during your 2nd and 3rd trimester but are also super beneficial during labor and deliver and of course helping you to bounce back during postpartum recovery.
The Side Plank
Lift into the side plank position – weight is on you forearm and feet, elbow is under your shoulder, knees and hips are stacked, body forms a straight line from head to toe, head and neck are in line with your spine. You will hold this position for 30 -60 seconds on each side. Be sure to engage your Transverse muscles and breath as you hold. You can modify this move by staying on your knees.
1) On all 4’s exhale as you do a gentle kegel while gently “hugging your baby” to round your spine.
2) Inhale to lengthen your spine. Do 10 slowly with focus on your breathing.
Hydration is so important. As you are working your body, be sure to have water on hand and take sips in between each set. Listen to your body! Go with how you feel and if something doesn’t feel right, stop, rest and take it easy.