Follow an exercise routine during pregnancy
Mothers-to-be should exercise regularly to avoid the hazards that pregnancy sometimes throws up, like high blood pressure or gestational diabetes.
Competitive and high-energy sports should be avoided, but regular exercise should be continued as before.
Women who were not exercising before becoming pregnant should slowly increase their exercise rate to reach a level of exercising for 30 minutes, three or four times a week.
Exercise is particularly important for pregnant women carrying more weight than is healthy.
The exercise should be a blend of endurance and strength training, sports science experts say.
Heart rates for women doing endurance training should ideally not exceed 150 beats per minute, with a maximum of 145 for women aged between 30 and 39 years and 140 for women more than 40 years.
Strength training should take place once or twice a week using light weights with eight to 10 repetitions.
A pregnant woman who begins to feel unwell or who feels movement in her womb should ease up on the training session. Among the types of exercise well-suited to pregnancy are hiking, brisk walking and cycling over flat countryside. Swimming is also good, although the water temperature should not fall below 20 degrees and not exceed 33 degrees.
Pregnant women should avoid completely exercise or sport with a high risk of falling or injury, such as horse riding, martial arts, marathon running or weightlifting.