Motivation, barriers and attitudes about exercise in pregnancy

Nikolina Zaplatić Degač, Anica Kuzmić


Introduction: Physical activity, especially exercising, plays an enormously important role for a woman’s well- being during pregnancy. However, the number of women engaged in physical activity during pregnancy depends on the access to information, possible barriers and motivators and women’s attitudes.

Aim: The aim of this research was to examine which attitudes are more likely to represent either barriers or motivation for conducting physical activity during pregnancy as well as to what extent it is connected with the labour and its outcome, including the apearance of pain in pelvic and lower back area.

Materials and methods: 167 women participated in the survey, having been questioned within the first three days following their labour. The research used a questionnaire about motivation, barriers and attitudes about exercise in pregnancy. The questionnaire include demographic dana and detection of pain in lumbosacral area.

Results: The obtained results indicate that the most common barriers to exercise in pregnancy are overwork at work and at home, and the main motivators are the improvement of physical and mental status, reduction of stress and easier labor and recovery from labor. A high rate of agreement was noted with the claim that exercise is beneficial in pregnancy. Pregnant women who are physically active in pregnancy have a lower frequency and intensity of pain in the lower back and pelvic region.

Conclusion: Encouraging exercise and physical activity in pregnancy is necessary for physical preparation for labor and prevention of pain in the musculoskeletal system.


Key words: physical activity, pregnancy, attitudes, low back pain, labour