Effects of aerobic exercise training on maternal and neonatal outcome: a randomized controlled trial on pregnant women in Iran

J Pak Med Assoc. 2014 Sep;64(9):1053-6.


Objective: To assess the effect of aerobic exercise training on maternal and neonatal outcome

Methods: The case-control study was conducted between January and July, 2011 . It was approved by the Research Ethics Committee of Toyserkan Azad University, and data was collected at prenatal clinics and delivery centres located in Hamedan, Iran. It comprised 80 pregnant women between 20-26 weeks of gestation randomly assigned to two equal and matching groups of cases and controls. The intervention group did exercise continuously on a bicycle ergometre for 15 minutes, three times a week; the intensity being 50-60% of maximal heart rate. The control group did not do any exercise training. All information was obtained from the clinics, delivery centres, and from the reports of delivery room midwives.

Results: No statistically significant difference was found between the two groups in gestational weight gain, pregnancy length, mode of delivery, first and second stage of labour, perineal tear, and 1st and 5th min Apgar score. Mean neonatal weight was significantly less in the intervention group than the control group (p < 0.001).

Conclusion: Exercising on a bicycle ergometer during pregnancy seems to be safe for the mother and the neonate.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Birth Weight / physiology
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Iran
  • Pregnancy / physiology*
  • Pregnancy Outcome*
  • Weight Gain / physiology