They are not an organ we think about very much, because they do their job most of the time without our even thinking about them, even when we’re asleep.
As your baby grows in the uterus, it gradually fills the pelvic area, then pops up above the pelvis and then becomes bump city sprawling daily upwards and outwards until you start to wonder will you pop!? All the other bits and pieces in your abdominal cavity have to change, adapt, move aside, glide up to accommodate this blooming human to be. People often experience a little breathlessness when space becomes tight, or iron levels are low.
So, how does Aqua4mum classes and the pool help with your breathing?
We do lots of work in Aqua4mums classes to help the muscles between your ribs (the intercostals) become more flexible and improve rib and ribcage mobility so that there’s somewhere to go with all the growth!
The water is helpful in training the respiratory muscles from early on in the pregnancy, a great advantage from starting your Aqua4mums classes early. The hydrostatic pressure of the water gently squeezes the rib cage which makes the muscles that breathe in and out (respiratory muscles) work a little bit harder, strengthening them in the process. We also work on improving lung volume and elasticity being better able to breathe. This puts you in good stead when your diaphragm gets gently pushed upwards as your bump grows. Keeping fit, which is what you are doing in the pool is how you build your efficiency in extracting and using oxygen in your body and muscles.
So, all these factors are part of Aqua4mums classes to help you to maintain your breathing well throughout your pregnancy. We’re all cosmically connected by the fact that taking a breath was the first thing that every single one of us did, to begin our life on this planet, the Lovely Lungs.