Should I exercise after child birth?
- Improvements in emotional well-being
- Reduced anxiety and depression
- Improved physical conditioning
- Reduced postpartum weight gain and faster return to to pregnancy weight
Yes, you should, but definitely have a read of what the experts say
“The post-partum period is defined as the time immediately after birth. There is no clearly defined end to the post-partum period, but it is usually considered to be 6 to 26 weeks following the birth. Many of the physical and physiological changes that occur during pregnancy will persist for 4 to 6 weeks after delivery. SMA recommends that women seek guidance from their health care provider before they begin or recommence their physical activity/exercise regime, but in general all healthy women should aim (through gradual progression) to accumulate 150 – 300 minutes of moderate-vigorous intensity aerobic exercise per week. Return to high impact activities or those that cause high gravitational load on the pelvic floor should occur gradually, an in consideration of recovery to any damage to the pelvic floor and abdominal muscles, which will vary according to the mode of delivery.”
There is systematic review level evidence to show that benefits of physical activity/exercise to the mother after pregnancy include:
Remember your physiotherapy assessment in the 4 – 16 weeks after birth
Evidence-Based recommendation: Postnatal women can benefit from individualised assessment and guided pelvic floor rehabilitation for the prevention and management of pelvic organ prolapse, the management of urinary incontinence and for improved sexual function. Level 1+
Goom, T., Donnelly, G and Brockwell, E (2019) Returning to running postnatal
Let’s get started! Book in with our Women’s Health Physio Winnie Liang for your postnatal care and gentle exercises to get ready for your Pilates Classes.