The pregnancy list of dos and don’ts is long — and may require you to give up your favorite activities. So can you bowl while pregnant? Let’s pin it down.
If those lanes are calling your name, we get you.
Whether you’re giggling at a gutter ball or watching those pins smash down in a strike, this is one fun activity to enjoy with friends and family.
But can you bowl while pregnant? Or is it best to wait until your baby is born to beat that top score?
We’ll take you through the details.
In this article: 📝
- Can you play bowling if pregnant?
- When is it not safe to bowl during a pregnancy?
- Top tips for safe bowling while pregnant
- What activities should be avoided while pregnant?
- Can you go bowling while pregnant? The bottom line
Can you play bowling if pregnant?
If you’re wondering, is it safe to bowl while pregnant?
We’ve got some good news for you.
So long as you are careful, bowling while pregnant is generally safe.
But, like most more strenuous activities, it’s always good to consult your doctor first.
All pregnancies are different, and professional exercise advice can help you navigate what’s right for your personal circumstances.
And once you get the go-ahead from your doctor, you should be safe to hit the lanes.
In fact, it might be a great way to get some exercise in!
About 150 minutes of low-impact exercise per week is recommended during pregnancy.
That’s because it comes with all sorts of benefits.
Exercise during pregnancy may:
- Help out with uncomfortable pregnancy symptoms. (ahem. Backaches and bloating, we’re coming for you.)
- Reduce the risk of health conditions, such as a high blood pressure.
- Boost your mood.
- Increase your energy.
- Keep you fit and strong.
- Help you sleep better.
(It also may lower the risk of gestational diabetes and preeclampsia, but the research is not conclusive on this.)
The American Pregnancy Association tells us that the general rule for exercising during pregnancy is that if you were doing it before you got pregnant, it’s usually safe to continue during your pregnancy.
So if the alley has always been one of your favorite playgrounds, it’s likely okay for it to continue to be so.
When is it not safe to bowl during a pregnancy?
It’s possible that your doctor will suggest that you don’t bowl during pregnancy if you have:
- Back or neck injury (either current or previous)
- Heart disease
- Diastasis recti, a condition where the rectus abdominis (your six-pack muscles) separate
- Placenta previa, where the placenta covers the opening of the uterus
- A history of preterm labor in your family
- More than one baby in your belly
You might also find that bowling becomes uncomfortable as your tummy grows.
There will be added pressure on your back, and bending down and lifting become much more difficult.
Rule number one during pregnancy (and at all phases of life) is to listen to your body. It has a lot of important things to say.
Top tips for safe bowling while pregnant
Here’s how to keep you and your baby as safe as possible:
- Make sure you are using the lightest bowling ball. To do this, you might want to:
- Choose duckpin bowling. This is a variation of ten-pin bowling where the balls are smaller and lighter. (Fun fact? It goes all the way back to the 1890s and is becoming more popular today. So it may be a trendy activity to suggest to your friends and family.)
And whatever kind of bowling you try:
- Ask for help lifting the ball from the shelf if you need it.
- Bend your knees when you throw, as this will help avoid back strain
- Step carefully, and avoid walking on the lanes themselves. This is because the lanes are often oiled and can be slippery.
If, at any point, you start feeling comfortable or feel any pain, stop bowling.
Full permission to sit down and cheer from the sidelines if you need to.
What activities should be avoided while pregnant?
Since bowling is a low-impact activity — without any extreme exertion, jolting motions, or dangerous contact involved — it’s generally considered safe while pregnant.
But there are some other activities that are best avoided.
It’s a good idea to steer clear of anything too strenuous, jerky, or that might bump your bump.
So that means that exercises like rugby and football are not such a great idea right now.
As are high-impact aerobic activities, as they usually involve a lot of jumping up and down and bouncing around.
Activities like skiing are also not great as they pose a high risk of injury.
And scuba diving involves decompressing when you come to the surface and this may pose a risk to your baby.
Also, it’s best to steer clear of roller coasters because of the jerky motions they put you through.
But you should still consult your doctor before starting any of these.
And again, it’s always important to listen to what your body’s telling you.
If you feel like you are over-exerting yourself, stop.
Can you go bowling while pregnant? The bottom line
Bowling while pregnant should be okay — and likely good for you.
Just check in with your doctor first to make sure there’s nothing specific that they are concerned about.
And listen to your body, go gently on yourself and stop if you need to.
Also, know that you don’t have to navigate these questions alone.
Your Peanut community is here, and we’re having the conversation. 💗
🎳 More from The 411:
Your Complete Guide to Pregnancy Workouts
What’s the Best Prenatal Workout?
Postpartum Exercise Tips
8 Chest Exercises for Women
SPD in Pregnancy: Key Info
Can You Lift Weights While Pregnant?
The 10 Best Ab Workouts for Women
What Are Metabolic Workouts for Women?
Exercise During Pregnancy: 8 Helpful Tips
Can You Do Squats While Pregnant?
Can You Go to the Chiropractor While Pregnant?