Pregnancy is the time to celebrate the conception of a new life. As the women reaches to the end of her third trimester of pregnancy, her body grows heavier, and bigger. Simple day to day activities feels like a dreadful task. Constant struggles to get good sleep and painful fetal kicks are some of the difficulties that remains till she gets labor. There are several methods that can help labor to come fast. Squats is believed to be one such exercise that can induce labor in a pregnant woman. In this article, we will see whether squatting really works or it is just a myth.
Advantages of doing squats in pregnancy
Squats is advantageous for your overall body. The benefits that it provides helps in inducing labor.
Enhances Pelvic Output: Squatting is an effective natural pose that relaxes and opens up your genital muscles. Doctors have found that regular squatting can improve pelvic output by nearly ten percentage.
Builds stronger muscles: Stronger leg muscles facilitate delivery of the baby. When you do squats, your leg muscles become denser and heavier that is required during the third trimester of pregnancy. Strong legs result in an effective final push that is needed for a successful delivery.
Reduced labor time: A woman in active labor finds it hard to pass every single second. Free movement in labor can make the delivery process easier, and shorter. According to a research, if a woman does squat daily in her pregnancy, then she can reduce this unbearable time by eleven minutes. Due to gravitational force, your baby will come out of the mother’s body quite sooner than expected.
Eases Constipation: Constipation is a common issue in almost all pregnant woman. Squatting, when done in final trimester of pregnancy is quite helpful to prevent this condition. It puts pressure on your pelvis muscles, that helps in easing constipation.
Creates Room: Another labor-inducing benefit of squat is that it provides more space for the baby so that it can easily move towards the birthing canal and come in the right birthing position. This adds convenience during labor.
What is the right way to do squat?
Having learnt the various benefits of squats and its role in inducing labor, now let us learn the right way to do it at home.
- Stand with your back erect. Your feet should be shoulder length apart.
- Lower your body while pushing your hip behind. This position is similar to sitting on an imaginary chair. Make sure your hip is only a few inches from the floor. It should also be parallel from the floor. Your toes, knees, and shoulders should be in one line. Back, and neck should be straight.
- While balancing your body, be in this position for one or two seconds. Your heel and toe should be firmly placed on the ground.
- By pressing your heels, and using your core muscles, rise your body and come back to the original position.
This completes one set. Based on your capacity, you can repeat this set for a few more times. It is advised to start slow and increase the repetitions with constant practice. When you are comfortable with free weight squats, then you can even try weighted squats. This is done by holding light weight kettle bells on both of your hands while doing the move. In absence of kettle bells, you can also use water bottles to make the exercise a little more challenging. Add weights to your exercise only when you are able to do a minimum of eight reps comfortably. This implies that the present weight is comfortable for you and you can add more resistance to your existing exercise.
Precautions to take while doing Squats
Squatting is a natural pose. However, it is very important to master the move to avoid any injuries. Here are a few precautions that will ensure the safety of you as well as your baby.
- Make sure you exercise on a flat surface.
- Wear comfortable clothes made from breathable fabrics.
- Eat good amount of protein, and healthy carbs to replenish any wear and tear in the muscles that may happen after exercise.
- To prevent any knee injury, ensure that your knees never crosses the feet at the time of doing the move.
- Eat adequate amount of water throughout the day.
- Be attentive to your body. If you feel tired, then do not overexert your body.
- Always perform the move under supervision.
- If you find any difficulties while performing the move, then you should discontinue the exercise immediately.
Also read: Tips To Prepare For Labor And Delivery
Squatting is viewed as one of the best exercises for the entire body. This exercise is safe to be done at every stage of pregnancy. Not just it helps in developing a strong core to assist in carrying your baby in the womb to term, but also aid in inducing labor. However, do not just rely on this exercise alone for your overdue labor to happen. Discuss with your doctor about other ways that you can implement for this purpose.