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My Baby, My Move: Examination of Perceived Barriers and Motivating Factors Related to Antenatal Physical Activity


  • Jenn Leiferman PhD, MS,

  • Tracy Swibas MS,

  • Kacey Koiness MA,

  • Julie A. Marshall PhD,

  • Andrea L. Dunn PhD

Address correspondence to Jenn Leiferman, PhD, MS, Colorado School of Public Health, 13001 E. 17 Ave, Aurora, CO 80045, E-mail:


Introduction: Based on a socioecological model, the present study examined multilevel barriers and facilitators related to physical activity engagement during pregnancy in women of low socioeconomic status.

Methods: Individual and paired interviews were conducted with 25 pregnant women (aged 18-46 years, 17-40 weeks’ gestation) to ask about motivational factors and to compare differences in activity level and parity. Atlas/Ti software was used to code verbatim interview transcripts by organizing codes into categories that reflect symbolic domains of meaning, relational patterns, and overarching themes.

Results: Perceived barriers and motivating factors differed between exercisers and nonexercisers at intrapersonal, interpersonal, and environmental levels.

Discussion: Future interventions should take into account key motivating multilevel factors and barriers to tailor more meaningful advice for pregnant women.