Meet Michelle from Barre Variations. Her technique is inclusive, creative and backed by proper biomechanics. Michelle has a BFA in dance, PMA-CPT, 200 hour Yoga certification and trained in The Roll Model Method by Jill Miller. She is the podcast host for The Barre Variations Podcast. Michelle put together together a 20 minute prenatal workout that's just as challenging even if you aren't pregnant. Read on to try her workout and get some of your prenatal workout questions answered!
What core exercises are safe during pregnancy?
It is safe to continue to do your regular core exercises through your first trimester. Once entering the second trimester, avoid doing things like crunches, and abs with a lot of flexion. It simply won’t feel comfortable anymore, and will cause strain down the line.
What exercises should I avoid during pregnancy?
Avoid exercises that include deep flexion and deep twisting rotation. Doing these two movements in a smaller range of motion is alright, as long as it feels good in the body.
Best exercises for each trimester
First Trimester- ALL EXERCISES! Do as much as you can while you can!
Second Trimester- Side planks
Third Trimester- Squats
How often should I workout while pregnant?
As often as you feel ok! Fatigue is a big symptom in pregnancy, and it is important to listen to your own body. If that means cutting back on the workouts, that is ok! If it means you’re still keeping up your regular routine, great!
Can I exercise in a heated room while pregnant?
I would recommend avoiding excessive heat. This can cause your blood pressure to rise, induce fainting, or make you over heated. When pregnant your blood level in increasing which causes you to feel warmer regardless or a room being heated. Be sure to drink a lot of water to stay cool, and stay away from the sauna!
Intensity level? How far should I push myself?
The recommendation is to not start any new workouts once becoming pregnant. So, if you’re a runner and it feels good to keep running that is ok. This isn’t a time to push past your limits or try to achieve a personal best record. The focus should be on feeling good, staying strong, and making sure that baby is developing properly. Everyone’s intensity level is different, and again this is when your own intuition will guide you.
A lot of popular workout brands don't make maternity clothes (OV & Nike come on!) - any recommendations of smaller brands that you love?
This is definitely an area for improvement. My favorites include:
Blanqi - the most comfortable and grow with you! Just don't put them in the dryer.
LuLuLeon - Aspire leggings, which are not maternity but expand while you grow.
Okko - for undergarments! Most comfortable bra that you can workout in, and the underwear is seamless and very comfortable.
Check out Michelle's podcast, The Barre Variations Podcast, for behind the scenes info about the barre industry too. She interviews leaders in the industry to talk about how barre impacts their lives and what inspires them!
Don't forget to use her code BARREVARIATIONS for 15% off your next order.