Exercise intervention in pregnancy: A feasibility study in Thailand

Sirikanok Klankhajhon, Jan McAllister, Poonsuk Hingkanont, Kenda Crozier

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Background: Exercise during pregnancy can increase physical fitness, decrease risk of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and control gestational weight gain (GWG) including association to enhance psychological well-being. Pregnant women generally have lower exercise behaviour than in the pre-pregnancy period. Objectives: The objectives were to determine the acceptability of a programme based on Thai Government guidance for exercise in pregnancy, and assess preliminary effects of the exercise programme. Methods: A total of 61 women between 12-16 weeks gestation were randomly allocated to the 10 week exercise intervention (n = 31) or control group (n = 30). Baseline measures were collected before intervention and preliminary effects data after completion of intervention and two weeks after expected date of delivery (EDD). Results: Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA) showed the exercise group had lower gestational weight gain than control group after controlling for maternal age, pre-pregnancy body mass index (BMI), gestational age, and baby birth weight (p <.001). The study indicated significant increases over time in physical activity after controlling for maternal age, and pre-pregnancy BMI (p <.001). Conclusion: The study demonstrated feasibility of conducting a larger RCT with an intervention to improve exercise behaviour in pregnant women. 
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)446-455
Number of pages10
JournalMIDIRS Midwifery Digest
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2020

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