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28 Mar 2011

Weight training declared 'safe' for pregnant women
BY Tom Walker

Pregnant lady with water bottle at gym

Pregnant lady with water bottle at gym

A study by University of Georgia has suggested that supervised, moderate intensity weight training is safe and beneficial for pregnant women.

The report, called Safety and Efficacy of Supervised Strength Training Adopted in Pregnancy observed 32 women undertaking strength training twice a week for three months.

The results show that no musculoskeletal injuries occurred while potentially adverse symptoms (such as dizziness) were infrequent - taking place only during 2.1 per cent of all sessions.

Repeated-measures analysis of variance (ANOVA) showed large increases in the external load across the 12-week testing period.

The benefits recorded were significant too - the percentage increases in external load from weeks 1 to 12 were 36 percent for leg press, 39 per cent for leg curl, 39 per cent for lat pull down, 41 per cent for lumbar extension and 56 per cent for leg extension.

Blood pressure was unchanged following acute exercise sessions and after 12 weeks of exercise training.

The researches concluded: "The adoption of a supervised, low-to-moderate intensity strength training program during pregnancy can be safe and efficacious for pregnant women."

The study was published in the current issue of Journal of Physical Activity and Health (volume 8, Issue 3, March 2011). For a synopsis click here.


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