Being pregnant is one of the most natural events in the life of a woman. However, being pregnant twice with identical twins is definitely a less common event… actually, 700,000 times less common. I definitely consider any pregnancy a blessing, but this blessing can also take its toll on a woman’s body.
I was a fitness instructor living in Ukraine when I got pregnant the first time. I’d heard about Pilates from a friend of mine who had gone to the US on an entrepreneurial scholarship. She returned with a million fitness ideas I’d never heard about and one of those ideas was Pilates. She shared with me the exercises she’d done in her mat classes. Even with just a small taste, I was immediately intrigued by this new fitness modality. It felt so natural to my body, so refreshing; it was an intelligent form of movement that both my mind and body enjoyed.
I started researching Pilates and gulping down any bits of information I could find. There weren’t any Pilates training centers in Ukraine so my education came from articles, the Internet and a limited number of DVDs. For seven years, I taught fitness and “amateur” Pilates at local gyms in Ukraine.
Pilates and My First Pregnancy
Even the primitive knowledge of Pilates I had at the time helped me get through my first twin pregnancy. Three weeks before my daughters were born, I taught my last class and was put on complete bed rest; two of them were spent in the hospital. Pilates turned out to be a life-saver. After years of building awareness of my body, I was able to pick exercises that relieved common pregnancy discomforts, without putting me in danger of preterm labor.
Editor’s NOTE: Pilates can be a great benefit to pre- and post-natal women. Check out Anastasiya’s story from our Spring 2014 newsletter to find out how she used Pilates to get back in shape after having twins – twice!