Safety and efficacy of supervised strength training adopted in pregnancy

Patrick J. O'Connor, Melanie S. Poudevigne, M. Elaine Cress, Robert W. Motl, James F. Clapp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objective: Describe safety and efficacy of a supervised, low-to-moderate intensity strength training program adopted during pregnancy among women at increased risk for back pain. Methods: 32 women adopted strength training twice per week for 12 weeks. Data on musculoskeletal injuries, symptoms, blood pressure, and the absolute external load used for 5 of 6 exercises were obtained during each session. A submaximal lumbar extension endurance exercise test was performed at weeks 5, 10, and 13. Results: The mean (± SD) exercise session attendance rate was 80.5% (± 11.3%). No musculoskeletal injuries occurred. Potentially adverse symptoms (eg, dizziness) were infrequent (2.1% of sessions). Repeated-measures ANOVA showed large increases in the external load across 12 weeks (all P values < .001) and the percentage increases in external load from weeks 1 to 12 were 36% for leg press, 39% for leg curl, 39% for lat pull down, 41% for lumbar extension and 56% for leg extension. Training was associated with a 14% increase in lumbar endurance. Blood pressure was unchanged following acute exercise sessions and after 12 weeks of exercise training. Conclusion: The adoption of a supervised, low-to-moderate intensity strength training program during pregnancy can be safe and efficacious for pregnant women.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)309-320
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Physical Activity and Health
Volume8
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2011

Keywords

  • Blood pressure
  • Exercise
  • Physical activity
  • Resistance training
  • Symptoms
  • Weight lifting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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  • Cite this

    O'Connor, P. J., Poudevigne, M. S., Cress, M. E., Motl, R. W., & Clapp, J. F. (2011). Safety and efficacy of supervised strength training adopted in pregnancy. Journal of Physical Activity and Health, 8(3), 309-320. https://doi.org/10.1123/jpah.8.3.309