When thinking about returning to exercise after having a baby, there a few things to consider. Ensuring your body has had enough time to recover from being pregnant and giving birth is very important for new mothers. During pregnancy your abdominal muscles must separate in order to accommodate your growing baby. The degree of abdominal separation differs between mothers but is a normal part of pregnancy. The term used for this separation is diastasis recti. This condition takes time to heal after giving birth and is extremely important to consider when thinking about returning to exercise, as these muscles shouldn’t be over worked. Ideally, after 6 weeks the abdominal separation is approximating 2cm wide. For more information on abdominal separation see the blog post ‘During and Post Pregnancy Management of Abdominal Separation.’
Another thing to consider is whether your birth was natural or by c-section, as this will also impact when you are able to return to exercise. A natural birth can take up to 6 weeks to recover before returning to exercise, while a c-section can take up to 12 weeks. Before beginning an exercise routine, consult your doctor to ensure your body is ready.
It is important to keep these things in mind before commencing exercise after giving birth. Exercising after giving birth should start small as you don’t want to over work yourself or cause any damage. Focus on your whole body when working out, not just your abdominal area. After pregnancy you may experience pelvic instability, so ensuring your gluteal muscles and core muscles are strengthened is important to restore your pelvis to its pre-natal state. Another area post-natal woman tend to address is the pelvic floor. Including pelvic floor exercises can help strengthen this area.
Remember, exercising after giving birth doesn’t need to be too intense. You can keep it simple with a walk, yoga or Pilates. Listen to your body and follow guidance from health care professionals.
For more information on exercise for post-natal women, see the following blog posts (insert blog here). And ‘Returning to Your Running Regime After Pregnancy – What You Need to Consider.’
How can Supacore help with post-natal recovery and exercise?
Supacore designs compression garments specifically for postnatal women. The patented CoretechTM technology in the high waistband assists with recovery of core muscles after pregnancy as well as provides support for the pelvis to reduce instability that can occur after pregnancy.