Pregnancy is an ideal time for maintaining or adopting a healthy lifestyle – ACOG
Those of us in the fitness industry know that exercise during and after pregnancy is incredibly beneficial for several reasons:
- energy levels,
- weight control,
- labor and delivery, to name a few.
Yet, the ACOG (The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the leading organization for women’s health care) just released a committee opinion favoring the benefits of exercise during and after pregnancy.
The previous committee opinion on this subject from 2002, recommended that pregnant women get 30 minutes of exercise on most, if not all, days of the week.
This ACOG recommendation is referenced in most Pilates and fitness resources that deal in pregnancy and exercise. So it’s not that the ACOG has been against it; just that they have found exercise to be more beneficial and safer then was previously thought.
New Marketing Strategy
What does this mean for Pilates and fitness instructors?
We can confidently reference ACOG, and depend on this reputable organization to back those of us in the fitness industry who work with pregnant and postpartum women.
This give us a whole new avenue of marketing possibilities!
Now that this reputable organization supports our efforts without suspicion, we can use this information to market our services with full confidence, and not be seen as an alternative idea. For example, you can use the following statement in a flyer:
“Medical Experts Agree: Pregnancy is the time to get fit!”
Society tends to rely on medical opinion to provide them with the most accurate information (even though it may not always be the most accurate). In this case, medical opinion is working for our cause. Make sure to use it to your advantage!
Why does the fitness industry reference ACOG over other women’s wellness organizations?
As a society, we need the reassurance that what we are doing in our lives is safe and effective. Like medical opinion, we rely on certain organizations to let us know this information.
PMA-Pilates Method Alliance is an example of an organization whom the Pilates community looks to for approval in their instruction.
The CDC-Center for Disease Control is the leading national public health institute that our society looks to for up to date information on health and other related topics.
And the ACOG is where professionals go to find the most relevant information on women’s health.
I have a large list of links from the ACOG website in my links category.
The following is the ACOG updated list of recommendations for pregnant and postpartum women taken from the December 2015 Committee Opinion on Obstetric Practice. I have underlined the pertinent points below. You can access this document at:
COMMITTEE OPINION Number 650 • December 2015 (Replaces Committee Opinion Number 267, January 2002)
Physical Activity and Exercise During Pregnancy and the Postpartum Period
Regular physical activity in all phases of life, including pregnancy, promotes health benefits. Pregnancy is an ideal time for maintaining or adopting a healthy lifestyle and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists makes the following recommendations:
- Physical activity in pregnancy has minimal risks and has been shown to benefit most women, although some modification to exercise routines may be necessary because of normal anatomic and physiologic changes and fetal requirements.
- A thorough clinical evaluation should be conducted before recommending an exercise program to ensure that a patient does not have a medical reason to avoid exercise.
• Women with uncomplicated pregnancies should be encouraged to engage in aerobic and strength- conditioning exercises before, during, and after pregnancy.
• Obstetrician–gynecologists and other obstetric care providers should carefully evaluate women with medical or obstetric complications before making recommendations on physical activity participation during pregnancy. Although frequently prescribed, bed rest is only rarely indicated and, in most cases, allowing ambulation should be considered.
• Regular physical activity during pregnancy improves or maintains physical fitness, helps with weight management, reduces the risk of gestational diabetes in obese women, and enhances psychologic well-being.
• Additional research is needed to study the effects of exercise on pregnancy-specific outcomes, and to clarify the most effective behavioral counseling methods and the optimal intensity and frequency of exercise. Similar work is needed to create an improved evidence base concerning the effects of occupational physical activity on maternal–fetal health.
What types of marketing slogans can you come up with incorporating these updated guidelines?
Please share them in the comments!
Thank you for hanging out here at YourPregnantCore.com, your pre & postnatal Pilates education depot. If you have questions, you can leave them in the comments, or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Happy Hundreds!Alison B. Marsh