As an Exercise Physiologist and Women’s Health Expert, I want to talk to you about the importance of exercising during the postpartum period and the associated myths of your postpartum journey.
HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH?
I’m a HUGE advocate for early intervention. I want you to start reframing your 0-6 week postpartum journey as this:
Start reconnecting to your breath as soon as comfortably possible
Find connections with your diaphragm and get comfortable feeling what an activated and relaxed pelvic floor feels like
If you experience extra bleeding or discomfort that continue into the next day, this is a sign that you’ve done too much
Stretch, move slowly, and no jumping/vigorous exercise during this time
At your 6 week mark, you should have full control of your pelvic floor activation and relaxation, you should know how to match your pelvic floor activation and relaxation to your diaphragm.
ABDOMINAL BIRTH VS VAGINAL BIRTH, WHEN CAN I START THESE GENTLE MOVEMENTS YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT?
No, I’m just joking. Not about the answer though! The birthing of your baby has very little to do with your postpartum journey. OF COURSE there’s wound care for abdominal births but as you start making your way through this period, you’re going to start getting a better understanding that it’s all about the pressure control in your abdominal cavity over the “way” you gave birth.
Something that all births have potential to go towards, is pelvic organ prolapse.
Pelvic organ prolapse occurs when we do not have the correct control of the pressure in our abdominal cavity. Meaning “bearing DOWN”. We want to keep lifted, tall. Think about keeping your organs light and away from any stress and straining to force it through your vagina or rectum. I speak extensively about this in my Masterclasses. If you’re interested in joining one of them, please get in touch below and ask about when the next one is! I host them every month!
OK, I THINK I’M WITH YOU. SO WHAT EXERCISES SHOULD I START WITH?
Sitting cross legged on a pillow. Inhaling into your rib cage. Exhaling and connecting your superficial pelvic floor and lifting your deep pelvic floor. Try this for 10 slow breaths a couple of times throughout the day.
Try the above on your hands and knees – A HUH! Harder. You’re correct. Our pelvic floor needs to be able to connect correctly, in different positions. Why? We don’t sit on pillows in a quiet space all the time, damn it! SO we need to give it the opportunity to activate and relax in different positions.
Mermaid stretches. Hold this position and try to encourage your breath into one side of your ribs (the one that’s open). Feel how your breath can stretch muscles and fascia. It’s phenomenal. See below!
These are the types of movements I go through in my “The Transition” package. You don’t have to be in your 0-6 week phase to try these classes out either. I send a lot of women to these classes who’ve had kids 23 years ago but have an inability to connect with their breath and pelvic floor. I just want you to be different. The Mum who’s proactive, who reads up on your pregnancy and journey ahead. That’s why you’re here right! So take those next steps into pro-activity and try some of these classes out.
Remember, prenatal is the sprint, postpartum is the marathon – you got this girl.
If the Rebecca Pilates prenatal and postpartum packages sound like something you need to incorporate into your pregnancy, as a lucky reader, you get 10% off all in person and online offerings! Click here to access Holistically Me, The Transition or in person Exercise Physiology services Use code ESM10 for the discount at check out!