Pregnancy brings a lot of excitement for the future but a lot of fear of the unknown. Bodies change and this change brings anxiety. You might start to question your previous activities and habits from the past- is it okay to continue doing all the same things you used to do before getting pregnant?
One of these activities you might be curious about is mowing the lawn while pregnant.
Should you mow the lawn while pregnant? The answer is yes, you are safe to mow the lawn while pregnant, but this all depends on the circumstances of your individual pregnancy. There is no one size fits all answer, so you must be very in tune with your body and use common sense when it comes to making this decision.
Remember, it is important to always consult with your physician when it comes to questions regarding your pregnancy. Read on to learn more about mowing the lawn while pregnant.
Mowing the lawn while pregnant: what is safe?
It’s generally safe to mow the lawn during a healthy pregnancy if you listen to your body’s signals. In fact, remaining physically active while pregnant is important and often encouraged by doctors, as it can decrease or alleviate symptoms of depression or anxiety, release endorphins- the “feel-good” hormones, prevent extra weight gain, and even make the delivery process easier.
Physical activity in pregnancy has minimal risks and has been shown to be beneficial to most women, however, there are some modifications that might be necessary due to anatomic changes or fetal changes/requirements.
Mowing the lawn can be considered a form of exercise, therefore it is safe to do while pregnant. However, there are some precautions and considerations when assessing whether to mow the lawn while pregnant. In a low-risk pregnancy, mowing the lawn is a physical activity that is super reasonable as long you take appropriate rest times and stay hydrated while out in the sun.
Honestly, you should really be aware of the same warning signs of overexertion the same way you would if you were working out while not pregnant.
Be very honest with yourself about your fitness levels pre-pregnancy and during pregnancy. If you are a gym junkie or a huge fan of the healthy lifestyle and had all these habits set in place before you got pregnant, you might be the most well-equipped person (on paper) to mow the lawn while pregnant. As long as mowing the lawn doesn’t go above and beyond a pre-pregnancy fitness routine then you should likely be in the clear.
It is particularly unsafe to implement any new or crazy workouts into your routine while pregnant if they were not a part of your routine beforehand. If you never mowed the lawn before pregnancy then it doesn’t make much sense for you to start while pregnant.
Factors to Consider
Aside from your fitness levels, make sure you are paying attention to other outside factors before deciding to mow the lawn while pregnant. For example, your decision should be made on other things like if you have a riding or push powered lawn power, the difficulty of the job based on the size or landscape of your lawn, the weather, and how you’re feeling that day overall.
Avoid mowing if you experience pain, light-headedness, or unusual bleeding or discharge. Pregnant women who are on bedrest or have high-risk pregnancies should definitely not be mowing the lawn.
If you have allergic reactions to grass, pollen, or other outdoor elements you should not expose yourself or your baby to those reactions. Additionally, if you find loud noises or vibrations troubling then it might heighten your anxiety levels and affect the baby’s health as a result.
Can Mowing the Lawn Induce Labor?
If you are that late into your pregnancy, you probably shouldn’t be doing anything requiring much physical exertion. However, if you are determined to be active up until your due date and looking for activities that might even induce labor then cutting the grass can do the trick!
However, a good walk is most likely just as effective. Again, it really depends on the person and their awareness of their physical limits. As long as you are paying attention to those limits you will likely be just fine.
What physical activities should I avoid while pregnant?
You can mow the lawn while pregnant but there are certainly other activities you should stray away from as they pose a higher risk for injury. Here are a few activities you should avoid altogether while pregnant.
Heavyweights can strain your back and pelvis and increase your chances of prolapse. If you have to hold something heavy try bracing your core when lifting and holding the object close to your body. If you love lifting weights, go for lighter dumbbells to reduce potential strain or seek guidance from a professional.
Certain Yoga Positions
Yoga is a great exercise both mentally and physically which means it might be hard for some to eliminate from their daily routine. You don’t have to give it up completely but rather make modifications to movements or avoid certain ones. Any position that requires a lot of twisting should be avoided in addition to belly-down postures, full inversions, and backbends.
Exercises on the Stomach
Lying on your stomach is uncomfortable for pregnant women and has the potential to injure the baby, especially after the first trimester.
Saunas and Hot Tubs
Too much time spent in saunas or hot tubs can increase the chances of birth defects through infectious ailments if the water, tub or sauna is not properly cleaned.
Rides and rollercoasters that have a forceful take-off or landing can potentially harm the baby as well as the mother. If they are too rough, avoid them.
Running and Jogging
There is a caveat to this! Light running or jogging is okay to do if it was a part of your exercise routine or a healthy habit for you before your pregnancy. However, it should not be introduced as a new form of exercise during your pregnancy, especially if you do not have proper form or technique.
High Impact Aerobics
Although they are great for burning calories, these exercises can increase the likeliness of falling and injuring joints and ligaments which balance your body.
Downhill Skiing and Snowboarding
These can be especially dangerous regardless of whether you are pregnant! Do not try these sports with a baby in tow as you risk falling and severely injuring yourself if not properly trained. Even if you are an expert, your center of gravity and balancing capabilities could suffer as your pregnancy and weight progress throughout the second and third trimesters.
Scuba-Diving, Surfing or Water-Skiing
Like downhill skiing and snowboarding, these can be very dangerous sports if you are not properly trained, whether on water or land. Air bubbles can form in the bloodstream and put the baby at risk. High-impact falls off a water-ski or surfboard can also pose great risks, and decompression of air during scuba diving can have a major impact on the health of the baby.
Again, this is a high-risk sport. If a horse gets spooked he/she can forcefully kick the person riding it off, causing severe injury or even death on impact.
Overall, mowing the lawn while pregnant is safe to do as long as the mother considers various factors and elements and listens to her body’s natural signals. As a general rule of thumb, if the activity is high-risk whether or not a woman is pregnant, they should most definitely not attempt that activity while pregnant. Common sense is key in this particular situation!