recommendations regarding pregnancy-related physical activity are not available
in the United States. Scientists conducted research to determine the relation
between duration of gestation and birth weight, and vigorous exercise.
Anne Marie Jukic and
colleagues carried out a research study that was published in the Maternal and Child Health Journal,
The pregnant women
were enrolled before 10 weeks of gestation; and at weeks 13 to 16,
thefrequency, type and weekly vigorous activity was noted.
Activities such as
recreational, household, occupational and adult or child care were taken into
The gestational age
was examined in around 1,647 births. The
researchers observed that vigorous recreational physical activity in the first trimester was
related with long gestation period.
suggested that this vigorous physical activity could be associated with better
In addition, physical
activity did not affect birth weight of the newborns.
The scientist said,
"Vigorous physical activity does not appear to be detrimental to the timing of
birth or birth weight."
The researchers said
that further future research is required to explore the other components of
physical activity such as duration, intensity and frequency, and their
association with birth outcomes. Thus, vigorous
activity during pregnancy cannot be recommended before the establishment of
specific guidelines in this regard
Physical Activity in
Pregnancy: Gestation and Birthweight; Anne Marie Jukic et al; Maternal and Child
Health Journal 2012