Family planning - Unfulfilled desire to have children? Exercise helps women get pregnant

Family planning - Unfulfilled desire to have children? Exercise helps women get pregnant

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New study: Exercise can help with unfulfilled desire for children

According to a new study, exercise can improve a woman's chances of becoming pregnant. However, previous scientific studies have shown that over-training can damage fertility.

What can help with the unfulfilled desire to have children

Couples are often advised to take the strangest measures when they want to have children. Some people think that it helps if the woman sticks her legs up after intercourse. However, Dutch scientists reported that this does not increase the chance of having a baby. Australian researchers have now discovered in a study what can really increase the chances of pregnancy: exercise.

Research results from two decades analyzed

According to a study by the University of Queensland (UQ), exercise can improve a woman's chances of becoming pregnant. According to the researchers, it is irrelevant which sport is practiced.

In order to arrive at these results, the team led by Dr. Gabriela Mena of the UQ School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences research results on reproductive health and exercise from the past two decades.

The results of the Australian scientists were published in the specialist magazine "Human Reproduction Update".

Physical activity as effective as fertility treatments

"When physical activity was compared to traditional fertility treatments such as IVF or ovulation induction, there was no difference in pregnancy rate and birth rate between women who exercise and those who do fertility treatments," said Dr. Mena in a message.

“This suggests that physical activity can be just as effective as the commonly used fertility treatments. At the same time, it represents an affordable and practicable alternative or complementary therapy to these very expensive treatments, ”says the scientist.

"We also found higher pregnancy and birth rates in women who were physically active than women who were not moving or not undergoing fertility treatment."

It doesn't depend on a particular sport

Dr. According to Mena, no particular sport was identified that worked better than any other.

“There were different types of physical activity in the studies studied, such as aerobic exercise alone or in conjunction with strength training, but even a moderate increase in physical activity - such as increasing step numbers - seemed to have the results for reproductive health improve, ”explained the researcher.

"We believe that a combination of aerobic and strength training is good for improving reproductive health, but it is difficult to recommend a certain type of training at this stage," said Dr. Mena.

"More studies are needed that focus on physical activity in women with fertility problems," said the study author.

And: "Further studies that examine different forms of movement, their intensity and their duration are required to find the optimal" dose "of physical activity."

Training too intensely can be harmful

However, previous scientific studies have shown that too much exercise can also result in the desire to have children remaining unfulfilled.

An international team of researchers reported in the journal "Human Reproduction" that an increased frequency, duration and intensity of physical activity goes hand in hand with an increased subfertility (restricted conception ability in women).

To arrive at this result, the scientists from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, together with colleagues from the United States, analyzed data from 3,887 women, which was carried out as part of a health survey in the north of Trøndelag, Norway.

Women who are very active in sports therefore have fertility problems more than three times as often as those who exercise moderately. (ad)

Author and source information

This text corresponds to the specifications of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.


  • University of Queensland: Trying to conceive? It's an exercise in fertility, (accessed July 15, 2019), University of Queensland
  • Human Reproduction Update: The effect of physical activity on reproductive health outcomes in young women: a systematic review and meta-analysis, (accessed: July 15, 2019), Human Reproduction Update
  • Human Reproduction: Physical activity and fertility in women: The North-Trøndelag Health Study, (accessed: July 15, 2019), Human Reproduction

Video: Gentle fertility yoga for the two week wait (August 2022).