What Are Good Exercises for the First 3 Months of Pregnancy?

The first three months of pregnancy give you the most freedom to start or maintain the exercise regime of your choice.

While you may have more morning sickness in the first trimester, you don’t have that enormous belly weighing you down and making your body ache all over. Whether exercising is a daily habit you can’t live without or something you haven’t done since high school P.E., there’s an appropriate pregnancy exercise to benefit you and your unborn baby.

Exercises to Maintain

If you’re already physically active, you should be able to maintain your regular exercises in the first three months.

You can still lie on your back for those stretches or yoga poses -- something you can’t do in later months as it may interfere with the blood circulation to your baby.

Pregnancy has likely not yet affected your center of balance, so feel free to bust a move in Zumba class or sweat to the oldies. You can safely continue your daily jogs or runs, too.

Exercises to Start

Pre-natal exercise.

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No matter your level of fitness, certain exercises are safe for everyone and may improve your mood, your energy level and keep you from gaining more than the recommended 25 to 35 lbs. Without adding any stress to your joints or bones, swimming works all the muscles.

Walking allows you to ease into an exercise routine with something you already do every day. Riding a stationary bike is another safe exercise to start.

Exercises to Avoid

Some exercises are never good during pregnancy. Avoid any contact sport in which someone could injure you or the baby with the force of a ball or her own body.

Skip the slopes as you could collide with someone, something or suffer altitude sickness -- restricting your baby’s oxygen supply. Put gymnastics, water skiing, scuba diving and horseback riding on hold during pregnancy. The jolts from riding can harm the baby.

Exercising With Caution

Pre-natal exercise.

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Even when you’re just going for a power walk, you need to take more than just your favorite tunes loaded onto your mp3 player.

Dress appropriately in a supportive sports bra, loose-fitted clothing and athletic shoes with good traction.

Take a bottle of water to stay hydrated. Warmup beforehand and cool-down after.

You should not feel hot or winded. Overheating is especially dangerous in these first three months.