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Back Care and Pregnancy – healthy bump and back!

Back pain is very common during pregnancy. As your baby grows, so increases the load, putting additional weight on your body, especially your back. At the same time, ligaments holding bones together become naturally softer in preparation for labor.

The combination of these can put a strain on the joints in your hips and back, leading to pain. 

But the good news is, gentle exercises and regularly moving your body will do wonders, not just for your back but your whole body and your growing baby. 


Try to avoid staying in the same position for too long

Did you know?

You can set yourself reminders on your phone to get up and move around for a few minutes every hour.

What can I do – back stretches

Pregnant woman doing cat pose
  1. Get on your hands and knees on a mat.
  2. Take a deep breath in.
  3. Curl your back up as you slowly exhale. 
  4. Arch your back and bring your belly towards the floor and look up as you slowly inhale.
  5. Keep alternating between these two positions up to 10 times. 
Woman doing child yoga pose
  1. Get on your hands and knees on a mat.
  2. Slowly bring your buttocks towards your heels to stretch out your lower back. 
  3. Breathe and relax.
  4. Hold this position for 10-30 seconds.
  5. Repeat up to 3 times. 
  1. Sit on a chair with feet on the floor.
  2. Take a deep breath in and tilt the pelvis forward, creating a slight arch in your back.
  3. As you exhale, curl up your lower back by tilting your pelvis backwards, like you’re trying to pull your belly button to your spine.
  4. Gently alternate between these two positions up to 15 times.  


  1. Sit on a chair with your feet on the floor.
  2. Sit with your arms crossed and gently rotate to one side.
  3. Hold for a few seconds, then rotate to the other side.
  4. Repeat 5-10 times on each side. 

What can I do – self massage

Massage can provide great relief for tired and tight muscles. And you can do it yourself using your hands or use a small ball. 

Pregnant woman rubbing lower back

Using your hands

  1. Sit on a chair or stand and locate any sore spots and areas on your body.
  2. Gently rub and massage it.
  3. If you find a really sore spot, apply pressure and hold it for 10-30 seconds before moving to the next spot. 
Hand holding tennis ball

Using a ball

  1. If you have a ball, place the ball on a spot that is sore on your back.
  2. Then gently push into the ball.
  3. Gently do small rocking movements 


During pregnancy, there is higher risk of a blood clot. Avoid deep pressure massage on your legs.




Are all exercises ok?

  • Avoid all contact sports and high fall risks activities 
  • For some pregnant women, lying on their back can make them feel light-headed, nausea or unwell.  If this happens to you, avoid lying on your back.  

Other back care tips


Lifting items from the floor 
  • bend your knees and keep your back straight 


Heavy items 
  • Avoid lifting anything heavy 


  • Wear comfortable shoe with no high heels 


  • move your feet when you turn to avoid twisting your spine 


Sitting posture 
  • keep your back straight and well supported when sitting 


Drink lots of water

Did you know?

Make sure to drink water before, during + after exercising

When should I speak to a healthcare professional?

If you experience any of the following, go and speak to the nurse/doctor: 

  • Vaginal bleeding 

  • Regular painful contractions  

  • Shortness of breath during rest  

  • Dizziness & headache 

  • Chest pain 

  • Muscle weakness affecting balance 

  • Calf pain or swelling 


If you have any questions or need some advice, ask your doctor or nurse to be seen by a physiotherapist who has advanced training in pelvic health problems. 

There might be one in your community. Or you can contact the pelvic health team directly.

We cannot wait to welcome your little one!

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