Research indicates exercise benefits babies in utero

Oct 29, 2019

Stephanie Morales, left, and Dr. Linda May work with Jodie Messimer, center, and and Lei Grigg during a prenatal exercise study at East Carolina University
Credit ECU News Service - Rhett Butler

Research at East Carolina University indicates babies born to mothers who exercise during pregnancy are healthier. A press release from ECU says the research indicates children born to mothers who exercise during pregnancy have improved motor skills, heart function and body composition. Dr. Linda May, an associate professor at the ECU School of Dental Medicine’s Department of Foundational Sciences and Research, said there’s a “dose response” to exercise… babies whose mothers exercise a little get a little benefit, babies whose mothers exercise more get more benefit. May’s team is currently trying to determine what type of exercise is most beneficial to babies. Current guidelines recommend 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise across 3-to-5 days each week, though pregnant women should consult their doctors before beginning an exercise program.