Body temperature and pregnancy exercise
It’s good to exercise safely when you are expecting, but it’s important not to get too hot. Fitness guru Vicky Warr explains how to keep fit and stay safe
It's good to keep up some forms of exercise during pregnancy. It helps you relax, keeps you in good shape ready for the physical demands of labour and motherhood, and it can help ease problems like pregnancy back pain.
Blood flow to the skin increases from the early weeks of pregnancy, which makes you feel warmer and perhaps sweat more easily, particularly in your hands and feet, when you exert yourself physically. (Pregnancy causes changes and increases in the blood flow in the uterus and also for the development of the placenta for the baby’s growth.)
Blood flow and your pregnancy body temperature
As your pregnancy progresses, your blood volume increases. Some studies show that it increases by 40% to 45% during a woman’s pregnancy. The extra blood helps the body meet the demands of growing a baby and also means more blood flows to the body’s organs, particularly the liver and kidneys.
You may feel a little light-headed as there is more blood pumping and flowing through the cardiovascular system, the heart, veins and arteries too.
Tips for your pregnancy work out
- When you are exercising, make sure you are in a well-ventilated room.
- Wear cool clothing. Specialised maternity active and fitness wear is ideal, like Fitta Mamma or Mothercare’s maternity active wear, both of which use breathable fabrics.
- Stay rehydrated by sipping water every 15 to 30 minutes during exercise and have
While you’re pregnant you should avoid any steam rooms or jacuzzis as you really will overheat; they are not appropriate for the physical changes that occur during pregnancy. Save them for relaxation and recovery after having your baby!
You'll find more tips in our article How to exercise safely in pregnancy.