BMI and GWG are essential for neonatal and maternal health. Exercise helps women moderate their BMI and GWG and provides health benefits to mother and child. This survey study assessed patients’ perceptions of counseling they received during pregnancy, their sources of information about GWG, and their attitudes toward exercise during pregnancy. We distributed an anonymous survey to 200 pregnant women over 18 at a tertiary care center in Danville, Pennsylvania. One hundred eighty-two women responded. Most reported their provider discussed weight and diet, expected GWG, and exercise during pregnancy; however, 28% of obese women and 25% of women who did not plan to exercise during pregnancy reported not receiving exercise counseling. Approximately 20% of women did not intend to exercise during pregnancy. Women decreased the number of days per week they exercised. Some patients who did not exercise before pregnancy expressed interest in a personal training session. Among women in the eight-month or later, 42.4% were above GWG recommendations. Our study found barriers to adequate activity during pregnancy; 20% of pregnant women not receiving/remembering counseling regarding exercise. Exercise and GWG counseling based on medical science and patient psychological needs will help efforts to reduce GWG and improve pregnancy outcomes.
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