Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Things to Know About Windsurfing in Pregnancy

Windsurfing is an extreme sport that combines surfing and sailing. When you windsurf, you stand on a board, similar to a surfboard, and guide yourself through the water using a large sail that is attached to the board. Windsurfing is a vigorous form of exercise, which is good for your health. If you have recently discovered that you are pregnant, you will need to hang up your windsurfing gear to protect yourself and your unborn baby.
Physical activity is an important part of a healthy pregnancy. If you are healthy and have a low-risk pregnancy, exercise has numerous benefits for your physical and mental health. KidsHealth reports that exercising while you are pregnant can help ease backache, prevent constipation, reduce your risk of joint damage and help you sleep better. Regular physical activity will also help prepare your body for birth by strengthening your muscles and increasing your endurance. You may be able to get your pre-baby body back more quickly if you exercise throughout your pregnancy.
You should not windsurf while you are pregnant. Windsurfing is considered an extreme sport and is not considered safe for you or your unborn baby, Anne Charlish and Adriane Fugh-Berman report in their book, "Your Natural Pregnancy: A Guide to Complementary Therapies." Windsurfing requires awkward movements that increase your risk of falling. The American Pregnancy Association notes that your joints are more lax while you are pregnant, and falling during this time, even into water, increases your risk of injury to yourself and to your unborn baby.
You should find ways to be physically active while you are pregnant. If windsurfing was your primary source of exercise before you got pregnant, rest assured that there are many other ways to get moving that do not have a high risk of injury. Walking burns calories, gets your heart pumping, tones your muscles and is safe throughout your pregnancy. A 1998 article in "American Family Physician," a journal from the American Academy of Family Physicians, suggests stationary cycling and low-impact aerobics as other safe ways to exercise during your pregnancy. If you miss the water, swimming is also considered safe during pregnancy, though a swimming pool may be a safer option than the ocean.
Ask your doctor what exercises are safe for you during your pregnancy. The amount of physical activity that is safe for you depends on your health and whether your pregnancy is considered low-risk or high-risk. Do not engage in any type of extreme sport that increases your risk of falls or abdominal trauma. In addition to windsurfing, do not do gymnastics or go horseback riding, skating, skiing or hang gliding. You should also avoid any type of contact sport, including football, soccer and wrestling. Wait for your doctor to give you the go-ahead before resuming your windsurfing routine once your baby is born.

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