Can riding a bike cause miscarriage?
Riding a bike may not necessarily cause a miscarriage. The reason is that miscarriages are not caused by controllable factors, but rather factors like chromosomal disorders, hormonal imbalances, etc. There are several protective sacs and fluids that surround the developing fetus, inadvertently protecting it from unnecessary jarring. One of them is the amniotic fluid contained in the amniotic sac. It helps to absorb any pressure or force impacted on the uterus.
Biking on the other hand is a form of exercise that’s focused on the legs, knees and sometimes, the abdominal muscles.
But then, it is still tagged as a low-impact exercise, in that it doesn’t put the developing fetus at any risk. However, before you take it on as a daily or weekly exercise; ensure that your doctor approves of it first.
You should also note that there are certain safety procedures that you must bear in mind when cycling as a pregnant woman. These tips will help keep you and the developing fetus safe.
Safety tips for riding a bike while pregnant
First, you should have some level of experience before you take on the sport as a pregnant woman. The reason is that beginners have times when they fall off the bike or ride out of the path.
You don’t want to imagine this happening to you while you’re pregnant.
Another factor to consider the slope of the terrain you’re riding across. If you are going up a terrain or sloppy hill, you might have to exert a lot of pressure which would definitely tell on your abdominal muscles.
Going down the hill or sloppy terrain is much easier. The best type of terrain to cycle across when cycling is a leveled terrain.
Either way, the following tips are great for pregnant women who want to take on cycling as an exercise.
Work with stationary bikes
The good thing about immobile bikes is that there’s no risk of you falling off. You only get to work the muscles in your legs as well as your thighs.
Cycling a stationary bike is the best style to be adapted by beginners as it develops the cardiovascular system as well as the power in the limbs.
It also regulates the blood sugar, improves the rate of blood circulation, and helps the woman prepare her body for labor.
Another thing is that stationary bikes are usually fixed indoors.
That way, the pregnant woman is protected from outdoor conditions like harsh weather conditions, dangerous or bumpy terrains, other careless riders or pedestrians, etc.
Before you pedal faster, start with little warm-up exercises. These exercises may not be related to cycling. You could go for a walk or do some mild stretches.
That way, you get your limbs and entire body prepped for the main cycling activity. While doing this, you should also study your body.
If you get tired after doing the warm-up exercises, do not proceed with the main activity. You should also keep a bottle of water close to you so that you stay hydrated the whole time.
Pay attention to your body
Cycling is good, but then, at a point the body may begin to react to the activity. Ensure that you pay attention to the little signals that your body throws at you.
It is dangerous for a pregnant woman to overwork herself as it could stir up pain in your legs and abdominal muscles. Once you begin to feel weak or nauseous, you could cycle at a lower speed.
If the weakness persists after a long while, immediately stop the game. That way, you can prevent the occurrence of other complications.
Can a bumpy bike ride cause miscarriage?
Yes, a bumpy bike ride can cause miscarriage. Miscarriages happen mostly in the first three months of pregnancy, i.e., the first trimester.
It is a condition in which the developing fetus is aborted due to certain factors and conditions that are most times out of the mother’s control.
Some of them include infections, hormonal imbalances, improper implantation of the fertilized egg within the uterine lining, disorders in the immune system, kidney diseases, uncontrolled diabetes, radiations, etc.
While most of the factors or reasons listed above are not intentional on the woman’s part, miscarriages can still be spurred by dangerous or reckless activities. However, this occurs in 1 out of 100 cases.
The reason is because the fetus is securely protected by the amniotic fluid. It prevents the jarring effect from the bumpy bike ride from having any effect on the developing fetus.
If you have a miscarriage after a bumpy bike ride, it’s most likely as a result of other inherent factors like these;
- The Age of the Woman
The rate at which miscarriages occur in women within the age brackets of 20 and 30 is way less than the rate at which it occurs in women within the age bracket of 40 and 50.
- Chromosomal Abnormalities
When the fetus formed after the fertilization of the woman’s egg with the man’s sperm has an incomplete number of chromosomes or maybe an extra pair, there’s a high chance of a miscarriage occurring.
- A Previous Miscarriage
A woman who has had a previous miscarriage is more prone to having another than someone who hasn’t had any before.
That’s why it is necessary that the woman contacts her doctor when the first miscarriage happens. That way, the inherent issue can be dealt with before the next pregnancy.
It is also in this kind of condition that the woman should avoid the bumpy bike rides! It’s best to be safe than sorry.
- Health Conditions
There are different conditions that can impose a miscarriage. Examples of such include diabetes, kidney issues, conditions affecting the cervix and uterus, thyroid diseases, congenital heart disease, etc.
Another reason could be as a result of the medications taken as a result of these conditions.
- Severe Case of Malnutrition
When you are pregnant, you have to bear in mind that you are indirectly feeding another being. So, the baby feeds off the food, minerals and vitamins that you ingest.
All of these are used for the baby’s growth and development. That’s why you must see to it that you eat well— a balanced and nutritious diet, and then, take all the necessary supplements.
Effects of a bumpy bike ride while pregnant
Other than the factors above, miscarriages will rarely occur. What bumpy bike rides actually cause include the following;
- Pain around the waist and abdominal muscles
This pain occurs when the jarring goes on for a very long time. It’d start with a slight feel of discomfort around the waist and then, proceed to a greater feeling of pain.
Once you start to feel that, immediately stop the ride.
- Premature labor
- Intermittent or fast-paced contractions
- Complications during pregnancy
- Weakness or nausea
- Chest pain or a severe headache
- Discharge from the vaginal opening