Author(s): Goodwin A, Astbury J, McMeeken J
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Abstract This study compared the perceptions of body image and psychological well-being between exercising and non-exercising pregnant women. A prospective longitudinal study was conducted with 65 nulliparous women (mean age years = 30.3, range = 23-39) who were allocated to 2 groups based on level of recreational exercise participation; 25 exercisers were compared with 18 non-exercisers. A self-report exercise history questionnaire and a 10 item Body Cathexis Scale were completed on two occasions during the pregnancy, at approximately 17 weeks and 30 weeks of gestation. The General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-28) was administered in late pregnancy. There was a significant difference between the exercise group and the non-exercise group in late pregnancy for some items on the Body Cathexis Scale. The exercise group had a lower level of probable caseness on the GHQ-28 with reduced frequency of somatic symptoms, anxiety and insomnia, and a higher level of psychological well-being.
This article was published in Aust N Z J Obstet Gynaecol
and referenced in Journal of Neonatal Biology