Heavily pregnant Chinese woman pole-dances effortlessly

A pregnant woman is making waves online in China for her ability to execute complex pole-dancing moves while in her last trimester.

With her full belly, Zhao Yitong from Liaoning has no trouble doing splits on the floor, or performing handstands in the gym.

In a series of self-portraits, the 27-year-old fitness/pole-dance instructor documented her journey through pregnancy.

The photos taken over the months show her defined abdominal muscles gradually making way for her growing belly.

CCTV News reported that Ms Zhao had signed up for a pole-dancing competition before learning of her pregnancy.

She persisted with training while she was four months pregnant and eventually placed sixth in the competition with her team partner.

Last week, her unsuspecting colleagues were shocked when she applied to go on maternity leave.

According to Sina News, the young woman had continued to work and exercise throughout her pregnancy.

Ms Zhao also gained less weight in comparison with other expectant mums so no one knew that she was carrying a baby.

Although many netizens are envious of her athletic prowess, others have expressed concern that engaging in such vigorous exercise while being heavily pregnant could be unsafe for the child.

However, Ms Zhao's pre-natal ultrasounds revealed that her baby was developing well and healthy.

A gynaecologist added that women who often work out already have strengthened abdominal muscles which can actually help support the additional weight of the baby and prevent backaches.

They also help with a smoother delivery as well as accelerate recovery after birth.

minlee@sph.com.sg