Can I play soccer during the first trimester of pregnancy?

(February 23, 2010)

Pregnancy is a natural condition and not an illness. Unless you have any complication, you can enjoy your sport at some level throughout your pregnancy. However, there are some factors that you need to consider while playing or before playing any sport.

•    Your health and risk status of your pregnancy
•    Stage of pregnancy that you are in
•    Risk of a possible injury during the play
•    Overheating of your body during the play
•    Degree of exertion required for the sport
•    Type of sport you play

Here is a list of sports that you need to completely avoid during pregnancy.

•    Scuba diving
•    Water skiing
•    Parachuting
•    Martial arts
•    Gymnastics
•    Trampolining

While the above mentioned are the sports that you need to avoid, here is a list that is safe during pregnancy. However, you need to consider the stage of your pregnancy and also seek a prior approval from your doctor before indulging in any kind of sports.

•    Playing a sport that involves no contact like swimming, walking, and jogging is considered to be safe for pregnant women. Thus, any sport that involves absolutely no contact from another person is safe to be played. Also make sure that you do not overexert.

•    Minimal contact sports like netball or badminton are also considered safe during the first trimester of pregnancy. Consult your doctor if you can play these sports in the second trimester, as you need to consider your health as well.

•    Collisions sports such as soccer and basketball are considered safe only during the first trimester.

While playing these games, you need to remember that you need to avoid overheating of the body. Here are certain things that you need to keep in mind.

•    Avoid playing during hot and humid days
•    Avoid playing if you are down with fever or any illness
•    Drink plenty of water before, during, and after playing
•    Wear light clothing
•    Take plenty of breaks by interchanging with other players

Apart from this, you need to remember that during pregnancy, your body releases a hormone called as relaxing that tends to relax your muscles. When your muscles are relaxed, you are more prone to injuries. Also, your growing belly can affect the gravity by pushing the center of gravity forward.

Finally, while playing, if you feel any of the following, contact your doctor immediately:

•    Dizziness
•    Nausea
•    Shortness of breath
•    Headache
•    Contractions
•    High heart rate
•    Decrease in fetal movements
•    Rapid swelling of face, legs, ankles, and hands
•    Bleeding or amniotic fluid leakage
•    Back or pelvic pain

Submitted by P T on February 23, 2010 at 11:58

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