Exercising in the post-partum period

Longevity Exercise Physiology and Personal Training Edgecliff, Lindfield, Marrickville, Randwick, Drummoyne, Balmain and Bella Vista today discuss what kinds of exercises are suitable to start post-partum.

Exercise might seem low on the list of priorities when you have a new baby (speaking from personal experience!) but there are so many benefits to doing even 10-15 minutes of simple exercises each day. In my professional opinion if you are having significant pain and issues, I highly recommend seeing a physiotherapist, or one who specialises in women’s health.

During pregnancy and breastfeeding, the hormone relaxin is released to allow room for the growing baby, however this can cause joint issues by reducing joint stability and thus increasing the risk of injury. It is important to perform stabilising and strengthening exercises for the core, glute and postural muscles to reduce this injury risk

There are a few areas that are important to address in the post-partum stage, and it takes time to restore your previous strength and physical capacity, all while learning this new skill of being a mother. During pregnancy and breastfeeding, the hormone relaxin is released to allow room for the growing baby, however this can cause joint issues by reducing joint stability and thus increasing the risk of injury. It is important to perform stabilising and strengthening exercises for the core, glute and postural muscles to reduce this injury risk. Many new mums hope to ‘bounce back’ quickly and return to running or vigorous activity, but in order to get there you need to strengthen everything first.

Here are some simple exercises that you can do at home – no equipment needed! Just pop your baby in the bouncer and away you go.

  1. Wall angels – this is a great postural exercise and helps to open up the chest area. From picking up your baby constantly, feeding and pushing the pram every day it is common for the chest muscles to become tight, causing poor posture over time which could lead to neck and back issues. Standing with your back against a wall, back of your head and buttocks touching the wall, move your arms to a ‘W’ position against the wall. While tucking your chin to your chest slide your arms up as far as you can, whilst maintaining contact with the wall. Repeat 8-10 times for 2 sets.

 

  1. Glute bridges – a great exercise for activating your glutes which might have gone MIA whilst being pregnant. Lying on the floor on your back, bend your knees and lift your buttocks up while gently squeezing them and relaxing your shoulders. Repeat 10x for 2 sets.

 

  1. Supine single leg lift – this is a very simple, yet effective core exercise and is great for helping to strengthen your deep abdominal muscles. Lying on your back with both legs bent, gentle tense your lower abdominal muscles by drawing your belly button to your spine, drawing your ribcage to the floor and lifting up one leg slowly. Repeat on the other leg until you complete 5-10x each side, for 2 sets.

Repeat these simple exercises daily and you will feel your strength regaining, allowing you to feel more confident as a new mum and be able to make a gradual return to your pre-pregnancy physical activity.

Contact Longevity Personal Training and Exercise Physiology Edgecliff, Lindfield, Marrickville, Randwick, Drummoyne, Balmain, Bella Vista on 1300 964 002 to enquire today.

 

Written by Susannah Mah-Chut

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