"Longing for individual recognition" - Pregnant women's experiences of midwives' counselling on physical activity during pregnancy Academic Article uri icon


  • The aims to explore among pregnant women were their experiences of lifestyle counselling provided by a midwife in antenatal care, addressing health promotion with special focus on physical activity during pregnancy, and factors influencing the trustworthiness of counselling conducted by a midwife.This qualitative study collected data from 14 pregnant, primiparous or multiparous women in gestational week 35-36 using in-depth interviews. The data were collected in Sweden in 2015. Qualitative content analysis was applied.The theme "Longing for fulfilment of individual needs and expectations" emerged during analysis, including four categories; "Being exposed to unsatisfying counselling"; "Appreciating supportive and trustworthy counselling"; "Wrestling with cultures", and "Dealing with physical activity in daily life". The results indicated that some participants experienced limited counselling that was characterized by lack of knowledge, support, and trustworthiness in the midwife. Other participants reported valuable encouragement and support by the midwife. Participants were longing for individual recognition instead of receiving general advice on physical activity that was designed for all pregnant women.Individual counselling on physical activity during pregnancy based on the participant's individual needs was desired. On the contrary, the participants could experience the midwife as having her own agenda, insufficient knowledge and primarily focusing on medical surveillance. There is a need of increased level of knowledge among midwives in antenatal care, regarding lifestyle and lifestyle change during pregnancy. This may enhance promotion of a healthy lifestyle for the pregnant woman during counselling.

publication date

  • 2018