Exercises help women during, after pregnancy

December 14, 1993

As the mother of three children, an obstetric nurse and an exercise physiologist, Yvonne Mitchell knows the importance of fitness and pregnancy.

Ms. Mitchell, who has conducted Carroll County General Hospital's prenatal and postpartum exercise classes for four years, has developed classes with exercise routines to help pregnant women get in shape for delivery.

The program is called "Aerobics for Moms." It is replacing the "Mama, Take Shape" prenatal-postpartum exercise program that has been offered at the hospital since 1989.

"It's one of the most rewarding jobs I do -- getting to know the people in my classes, talking to them about their pregnancies and helping them feel good about the changes their bodies are undergoing," says Ms. Mitchell, who works in the hospital's obstetric unit and nursery.

Aerobics for Moms will offer four-week cycles with morning, lunchtime and evening classes.

The morning class, at First United Presbyterian Church of Westminster from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., is for women who already have delivered. This workout features high-intensity aerobics to tighten abdomens and thighs. Mothers are encouraged to bring their babies.

The hospital also has teamed with the YMCA to offer a lunchtime class, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., with free baby-sitting for infants and toddlers. This class is designed for both prenatal and postpartum women.

Two evening classes, from 5:50 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. and from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m., will offer exercises for prenatal and postpartum mothers at First United Presbyterian. Because of space limitations, baby-sitting is not available.

Ms. Mitchell still is offering a three-hour orientation for expectant women on pregnancy and fitness. This class gives pregnant women an overview of how prenatal conditioning and good nutrition can benefit the growing fetus and a woman's body.

For information or enrollment, call 857-6935.

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