References

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Exercise during pregnancy and the post-partum period. Committee Opinion Number 267. http://bit.ly/2tAeyuX (accessed 25 June 2018)

Practice bulletin No. 106: Intrapartum fetal heart rate monitoring: nomenclature, interpretation and general management principles. Obstet Gynecol.. 2009; 114:192-202 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1097/AOG.0b013e3181aef106

American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Physical activity and exercise during pregnancy and the post-partum period. Committee Opinion Number 650. 2015. https://www.acog.org/-/media/Committee-Opinions/Committee-on-Obstetric-Practice/co650.pdf?dmc=1&ts=20160524T0411455662 (accessed 4 June 2018)

Obesity statistics. 2018. https://researchbriefings.parliament.uk/ResearchBriefing/Summary/SN03336 (accessed 4 June 2018)

Bauer PW, Broman CL, Pivarnik JM. Exercise and pregnancy knowledge among healthcare providers. J Womens Health (Larchmt). 2010; 19:(2)335-41 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1089/jwh.2008.1295

Bø K, Artal R, Barakat R Exercise and pregnancy in recreational and elite athletes: 2016 evidence summary from the IOC expert group meeting, Lausanne. Part 2—the effect of exercise on the fetus, labour and birth: Table 1. Br J Sports Med.. 2016; 50:(21)1297-305 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1136/bjsports-2016-096810

Boyle S, Thomas H, Brooks F. Women's views on partnership working with midwives during pregnancy and childbirth. Midwifery. 2016; 32:21-9 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1016/j.midw.2015.09.001

Currie S, Sinclair M, Murphy MH, Madden E, Dunwoody L, Liddle S. Reducing the decline in physical activity during pregnancy: a systematic review of behaviour change interventions. PLOS One. 2013; (8)1-12 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0066385

Da Silva S, Luiza R, Evenson K, Hallal P. Leisure-time physical activity in pregnancy and maternal-child health: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials and cohort studies. Sports Med.. 2017; 47:(2)295-317 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1007/s40279-016-0565-2

Daley AJ, Foster L, Long G The effectiveness of exercise for the prevention and treatment of antenatal depression: systematic review with meta-analysis. BJOG. 2015; 122:(1)57-62 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1111/1471-0528.12909

Sedentary Behaviour and Obesity Expert Working group. Sedentary Behaviour and Obesity: Review of the current scientific evidence.London: Department of Health; 2010

Department of Health. Physical activity in pregnancy infographic guidance. 2017. https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/622335/CMO_physical_activity_pregnant_women_infographic.pdf (accessed 4 June 2018)

DePoy E, Gitlin LN. Introduction to Research: Understanding and applying multiple strategies, 5th edn. St. Louis, MO: Elsevier; 2016

Harrison AL, Taylor NF, Shields N, Frawley HC. Attitudes, barriers and enablers to physical activity in pregnant women: a systematic review. J Physiother.. 2018; 64:(1)24-32 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jphys.2017.11.012

Hopkinson Y, Hill DM, Fellows L, Fryer S. Midwives understanding of physical activity guidelines during pregnancy. Midwifery. 2018; 59:23-6 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1016/j.midw.2017.12.019

Krans EE, Gearhart JG, Dubbert PM, Klar PM, Miller AL, Replogle WH. Pregnant women's beliefs and influences regarding exercise during pregnancy. J Miss State Med Assoc.. 2005; 46:(3)67-73

Kwolek LA, Berry-Cabán CS, Thomas SF. Pregnant soldiers' participation in physical training: a descriptive study. Mil Med.. 2011; 176:(8)926-31 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.7205/MILMED-D-10-00231

Leiferman J, Gutilla M, Paulson J, Pivarnik J. Antenatal physical activity counseling among healthcare providers. J Obstet Gynaecol.. 2012; 2:346-55

Magro-Malosso E, Saccone G, Di Tommaso M, Roman A, Berghella V. Exercise during pregnancy and risk of gestational hypertensive disorders: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand.. 2017; 96:(8)921-31 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1111/aogs.13151

Weight management before, during and after pregnancy.London: NICE; 2010

Antenatal and postnatal mental health: clinical and service guidance [CG192].London: NICE; 2018

Robledo-Colonia AF, Sandoval-Restrepo N, Mosquera-Valderrama YF, Escobar-Hurtado C, Ramírez-Vélez R. Aerobic exercise training during pregnancy reduces depressive symptoms in nulliparous women: a randomised trial. J Physiother. 2012; 58:(1) https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1016/S1836-9553(12)70067-X

Rogoziñska E, Marlin N, Jackson L Effects of antenatal diet and physical activity on maternal and fetal outcomes: individual patient data meta-analysis and health economic evaluation. 2017; 21:(41)1-158 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.3310/hta21410

Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists. Recreational exercise and pregnancy: information for you. 2006a. http://bit.ly/2tCT6Wf (accessed 4 June 2018)

Exercise in pregnancy.London: RCOG; 2006b

Santo EC, Forbes PW, Oken E, Belfort MB. Determinants of physical activity frequency and provider advice during pregnancy. BMC Pregnancy Childbirth. 2017; 17:(1) https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1186/s12884-017-1460-z

Shakeel N, Richardsen KR, Martinsen EW, Eberhard-Gran M, Slinning K, Jenum AK. Physical activity in pregnancy and postpartum depressive symptoms in a multiethnic cohort. J Affect Disord.. 2018; 236:93-100 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2018.04.081

Watson ED, Oddie B, Constantinou D. Exercise during pregnancy: knowledge and beliefs of medical practitioners in South Africa: a survey study. BMC Pregnancy Childbirth. 2015; 15:(1)245-51 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1186/s12884-015-0690-1

Williams NH. Promoting physical activity in primary care. BMJ. 2011; 343 https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.d6615

Recreational exercise during pregnancy: Attitudes and beliefs of midwives and physiotherapists

02 July 2018
14 min read
Volume 26 · Issue 7

Abstract

Background

There is compelling evidence for the benefits of exercise during pregnancy for both the mother and fetus.

Aim

To investigate the attitudes and beliefs of physiotherapists and midwives in the North of England regarding the provision of recreational exercise during pregnancy and to identify the sources of information used to influence this.

Method

This study used an observational cross-sectional design. A questionnaire was divided into three sections: demographic information, attitudes and beliefs about recreational exercise, and sources of information. The questionnaire was distributed to a convenience sample of 152 physiotherapists and 168 midwives in the North of England. Descriptive statistics and frequency tables were calculated.

Findings

The majority of the findings were positive in relation to attitudes and beliefs about recreational exercise during pregnancy among healthcare practitioners.

Conclusion

It is clear from this study that continuing professional development is required to update some healthcare professionals' knowledge base.

Many studies have confirmed the benefits of recreational exercise during pregnancy for both the mother and the fetus (Magro-Malosso 2017; Rogoziñska et al, 2017). Recreational exercise is defined by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) as ‘planned regular exercise that a woman takes during her pregnancy, which involves energetic (aerobic) exercise (such as swimming or running) and/or strength conditioning exercise’ (RCOG, 2006a:2). Many national and international guidelines recommend that pregnant women should regularly participate in moderate intensity aerobic and strengthening exercises as part of their antenatal care (American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), 2002; 2015; Department of Health, 2017). Despite these recommendations, research has shown that only approximately 3-15% of pregnant women in the UK and the USA meet guidelines (Currie et al, 2013).

Register now to continue reading

Thank you for visiting British Journal of Midwifery and reading some of our peer-reviewed resources for midwives. To read more, please register today. You’ll enjoy the following great benefits:

What's included

  • Limited access to our clinical or professional articles

  • New content and clinical newsletter updates each month