“I’ve been doing Pilates once or twice a week since I’ve been pregnant just because my doctor recommended it. She said women could do Pilates give birth faster. She swears by it,” DiDonato says.
Record scratch—what? I figured parents-in-waiting would be intrigued to know more, so I dug in and it’s totally true. A study published in BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth in July of this year found that regular mild to moderate Pilates during pregnancy helped improve the birthing experience for participants.
The study found that practicing during pregnancy significantly reduced the pain intensity, length of the labor (specifically during the active and secondary phase)—and overall just increased maternal satisfaction of the entire process. The study authors noted that a larger sample size would be needed to confirm the findings, but pretty optimistic findings from the onset.
“Otherwise I don’t know if I’d do it—since I like more high intensity workouts—but anything for a smooth labor I guess” she jokes.